Ghosts in Flight

Get ready for some airborne Halloween hysteria.
White balloons
balloon pumps (or hefty sets of lungs)
Other colored ballons if you are playing a different version
optional black sharpie pen for each team (for drawing ghost faces)

1. Divide kids into even teams.
2. Have each team form a circle. (make sure that each team has ample space around them)
3. Assign "positions" to each player (1st, 2nd, 3rd, 4th, etc.)
4. Give each player a balloon (remember younger children should never place balloons in their mouths) and have them practice blowing up the balloon (if you have balloon pumps for each team let the players take turns using it)
5. For a bit of fun have players pair up and draw ghostly faces with a sharpie pen on their balloons - one player can hold the blown up balloon (so the air doesn't escape) for the other while they draw.

How to Play

1. On "Go" the first person in each team runs to the center of their circle, blows up their balloon "ghost" (or has an adult blow it up for them), holds the balloons over their heads, and releases the balloon into the air.
2. Team members all try to catch the flying ghost before it hits the ground.
3. Once the ghost has been retrieved and returned to it's owner, the 2nd player runs into the center of the circle (the 1st person taking their empty space).
4. Play continues until all players have had a turn.
5. When the last player has their ghost in hand they return to the circle's edge and everyone sits down and says "booooo". The first team to do this (if you are playing as a competition) wins.


1. If you have enough room (make sure no one is going to bang into anyone else), or only a few players, you can play the game for number of catches and releases - set a timer (say 2 minutes) and have each child blow, release, and catch as many times as they can.
2. Set up a series of targets - hula hoops, buckets, cardboard box, overturned hat, coffee can - around playing space, and see if kids can land their ghosts in the said targets. Assign points to each target (smaller targets getting more points of course).
3. If ghosts are too spooky, substitute black balloons and call them flying crows.
4. Fit this game into any season by just changing the color of the balloon and the theme of the game - make pink balloons flying cherry blossoms, Yellow balloons butterflies, black balloons could be cannonballs for a pirate party, etc.

Activity Length
5 - 15 minutes
Either/or (can be played either way)
Easy peasy (fun and simple)
Mess Factor
Clean and tidy
Noise Level
Number of Players
3 to 4
5 to 10
10 to 20
Prep Time
5 - 10 minutes
Team Division
Every man for himself (individual players)
Teamwork! (divide into teams)