Monday, May 19, 2008

Paper Kites

This is another activity out of a Rainy Day Book that I have. I was surprised at how these kites held up out in the wind. They are made out of just plain sheets of paper. I used regular 8.5 x 11 sheets, but you could probably use different sizes or even wrapping papers to throw some cute patterns in the mix. A metallic wrapping paper would look neat flying on a sunny day!

What You Need:

3 pieces of thin paper (regular 8.5 x 11 computer paper or whatnot)
Drinking straw
Clear adhesive tape
Cotton thread
Paper Clip


1. Take one of the pieces of paper and fold the short sides to meet each other. At the very top, mark a dot 2cm from the left corner. At the very bottom, mark a dot 2cm from the right corner.

2. Pull the top layer in your direction and make a fold between the dots.

Now turn the whole sheet of paper over. Fold the top piece over, so that the crease matches the one that is directly underneath.

3. Unfold the top piece of paper again, then turn the whole sheet over. Lay a ruler between the left and right corners and draw a pencil line across the paper.

4. Mark the middle of the straw. Lay it along the line with the mark on the kite's middle fold. Put adhesive tape on each side. (if using a bendy straw, secure the bendy part with tape so it stays stiff.)

5. Turn the kite over. Lay a ruler between the left and right corners. Draw a line across the folded part only. Label this Line A.

6. Mark a dot on the folded edge, 1 inch above line A. Then draw a line from the dot to where A meets the middle fold. Label this Line B (I'll be honest in saying that I have no idea what Line B is for... I followed the instructions and it never has us do anything with Line B! So you can skip this 6th step all together, however the pictures will have Line B in them.)

7. To make a reel, fold a second piece of paper in half four times, then in half lengthwise. Tape where the two halves meet to keep it from popping open.

Tie a length of thread around the reel and wind it up. (I taped the first end down to the reel). Make the thread as long as you want. The directions suggest 33 feet, but I think mine is only about 15 feet. (33 feet? Seriously? Maybe that's why my kites are so durable! They didn't have a chance to get up high enough in the crazy winds!)

8. Tie the other end of the thread securely to a paper clip. Push the paper clip firmly onto the kite at Line A. I taped over the paper clip on both sides, as well.

9. Cut the third piece of paper into long strips, about 2 cm wide. Tape them together to make a tail about 31.5 inches long (I think mine was actually 5 strips that were 11 inches long, so about 55 inches long! Eek!)

10. Use a pencil or paper punch to make a hole in one end of your tail.

11. Make a hole near the bottom of the keel (the middle foldy part of the kite- at the opposite end of Line A and B). (I actually reinforced the holes by putting a piece of tape on the area first, and then punching my hole.) Tie the tail on with a little piece of string.

You're ready to fly your kite!

1 comment:

Ribbon Rock Star said...

I love this! I featured your blog and this craft on my blog.