The Unpoppable Balloon

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In this activity, learners explore polymer structure and their ability to reform around objects by attempting to stab a wooden skewer through a balloon without popping it. This activity comes with a step-by-step instructions guide with pictures, discussion questions, suggested activity extensions, and a TED-Ed video about polymers.

Quick Guide

Preparation Time:
Under 5 minutes

Learning Time:
10 to 30 minutes

Estimated Materials Cost:
$1 - $5 per student

Age Range:
Ages 8 - 14

Resource Type:


Materials List (per student)

  • Balloon
  • Wooden skewer
  • Vegetable oil
  • Tape (optional- for activity extension)


  • Physical Sciences


Components that are part of this resource:

This resource is part of:

Access Rights:

  • Free access


  • OMSI