Golden Birthday Ball

Golden Birthday Ball lesson plan

Start a new tradition that children in Switzerland really enjoy. Roll a Golden Birthday Ball and share good wishes with the birthday child!

  • 1.

    Here’s a Swiss way to say "Happy Birthday!" Children lay decorated fabric on the floor and sit around it. The birthday child rolls a Golden Ball to one person at a time. Each friend rolls the ball back to the birthday child while extending a greeting. After all wishes are given, the birthday cloth is put on the back of the birthday child’s chair. You can make the fabric and ball to use in your classroom.

  • 2.

    Decorate the fabric. On paper, use Crayola® Erasable Colored Pencils and your imagination to sketch ideas to decorate the birthday fabric. Just erase if you change your mind.

  • 3.

    On cotton or 50/50 cotton/polyester fabric, use Crayola Fabric Markers to design the birthday greetings. If the fabric is likely to be laundered, ask an adult to heat-set the colors by putting it in a dryer for 30 minutes on the hottest setting.

  • 4.

    Make the Golden Ball. Roll Crayola Model Magic into a ball. Air-dry it 24 hours.

  • 5.

    Cover your craft area with newspaper. Using gold Crayola Premier Tempera and a Crayola Brush, paint your ball. Air-dry it. Enjoy celebrating your new birthday tradition often!


  • Students recognize that cultures celebrate birthdays in different ways with unique customs.
  • Students show their knowledge of a Swiss birthday custom by creating a birthday cloth and golden ball.
  • Students demonstrate use of the cloth and ball to celebrate a classroom birthday.


  • Research other countries to discover how birthdays are celebrated. For instance, in Mexico a large party is given to girls on their 15th birthday. Russians eat birthday pie, birthday chairs are common in Lithuania and Holland, and a birthday flag is hung
  • Younger children and those with special needs could each make a ball for their birthday.
  • Sing "Happy Birthday" in the home languages of children in the group or neighborhood. Ask family members to tell the group about their traditions.