Here’s a fun ninja craft for kids to make! Use balloons to create squishy stress balls that look like ninjas.
Use yellow balloons if you want your ninjas to look like the LEGO® Ninjago characters. These would make great birthday party favors!
The secret to a good stress ball is a good filling! I’ve got two choices for you, and I’ll tell you the pros and cons of each.
Flour – This is good for making a nice firm stress ball. Flour is also inexpensive and readily available. Filling the stress balls with flour does make the stress balls firm and hard for little hands to squeeze.
Play Dough – A play dough filling makes a soft and squishy stress ball. We preferred the play dough filling overall. The other benefit of play dough is that if the balloon breaks (and there are multiple layers, so it’s not a huge risk, but could definitely happen), play dough is much less mess than flour. If you decide to go the play dough route, I would highly recommend making your own play dough as it took 1.5 cans to fill each balloon. The play doh brand cans seem to be shrinking and yet the price stays the same… hmm…
You can find our simple homemade play dough recipe here.
We made some stress balls with both types of filling. I emphasized to the boys that these are for squeezing, not throwing, as they are too hard to throw. The feel great, though, and my husband has requested a blue one for his desk at work!
To make them you will need:
- Balloons – white or yellow for the face, and other colors for the ninja mask
- Sandwich baggies – either fold-over or ziploc (if you use ziploc, you’ll have to cut the zipper off)
- Flour or play dough
- Ballpoint pen
Step 1: Fill a baggie with 3/4 cup of flour (or play dough). Filling a baggie is SO much easier than trying to stuff a balloon with flour! We saw this tip on Tip Junkie from a link in Red Ted Art’s juggling balls post, and it made the job so much easier.
Step 2: Fold over the baggie and squeeze out all the air. Cut the blowing end off of a white balloon so that you are left with a round balloon with a hole.
Step 3: Stuff the baggie filled with flour or play dough into the balloon.
Step 4: Cut off the blowing end of another balloon. Cut an opening for the ninja face. Then, stretch this balloon over the white balloon with the opening facing the opposite way (so that the flour baggie can’t come out). Add a ninja face with a ballpoint pen. We tried Sharpie initially, and the faces kept rubbing off when the boys played with them. We made another ninja ball and used ballpoint pen, and the face still looks great even after lots of handling.
If you find that even ballpoint pen ink comes off, try a different pen. That helped for us.
They boys have been carrying their ninja balls everywhere. They are fun to squish and squeeze and then shape them back into balls again.
These ninja balls would make great gifts or party favors! They were very inexpensive, and quick to put together (5 min. per ball once we got the process down).
Need more craft ideas for kids?
If your kids like ninjas, you might also want to check out our pipe cleaner ninjas. Those were another big hit!
Here’s a collection of 30 Paper Crafts for Kids. Crafting with paper is awesome because it’s so affordable, especially if you have a classroom full of kids and a tight budget!
I also highly recommend rock painting with kids!