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As your child has fun sailing these homemade boats, she might just be discovering the basics of propulsion.

To make this boat you will need a plastic paper plate and a balloon.

  1. First poke a hole in the middle of the plate.
  2. Then, stick a balloon through the hole in the plate.
  3. Blow the balloon up from the back of the plate and knot the end.
  4. Have your child set the balloon boat in the bathtub or wading pool and blow on the balloon to make it go.


Here is another fun boat to make with a balloon and a milk carton.

  1. Rinse out a ½ gallon milk carton, then cut it in-half lengthwise.
  2. Using one half of the carton, poke a hole in the middle of the bottom of the carton.
  3. Place a balloon in the carton and pull the bottom of the balloon through the hole. Do not tie the end.
  4. Blow up the balloon and have your child hold the end tight while he places the balloon in the water.
  5. Then have him let go of the balloon. Your child will love watching the milk carton boat "jet" across the water.

To make this boat, you will need a plastic foam food tray and some liquid soap.

  1. First cut the food tray into the shape of a simple square house with a pointed roof.
  2. Next, cut out a rectangular door shape at the bottom of the house shape.
  3. Have your child place the boat shape in some water and then place a few drops of liquid soap in the rectangular opening. Your child will be delighted when she sees her boat starting to move across the water.