This week I wanted to do an activity that was slightly more geared towards my eldest charge.  He loves doing anything creative; he asks pretty much every day if he can make something, a few weeks ago he decided he wanted to make a nutcracker!  So, as I said, this week I wanted to move away from the paints and towards the scissors and something that would get him and my youngest charge moving (obviously not with the scissors).  Well, clearly we needed to make some helicopters then.

When my charges found out what we were making that afternoon after school they got excited and asked to do them immediately.

To make your own helicopters you will need:

  • Card stock
  • Scissors
  • Ruler
  • Pencil
  • Paper clips
  • Tape – we used decorative duck tape

1. You need to draw out the design for the helicopter following these measurements.

2. Cut out the helicopter – all the bold lines need to be cut and all the dotted lines need to be folded.

 

Eldest charge really trying hard to cut on the line

3. Fold flaps A and B in opposite directions.

4. Fold flap E up, then fold C towards you and flap D away from you, secure with a paper clip, then wrap some tape around it to keep the paper clip in place.

After we had made ours we tried just throwing them up in the air and watching them spin down, but to get really good results you need to drop them from a height.  We tried over the banister, from the top bunk and from out of a window – I should say I dropped them out of the window while they tried to catch them. We made a half sized one as well so it gave us the chance to make hypothesis about which one would fall fastest or spin quicker.

These helicopters would definitely make a good addition to a trip to the park; they could try dropping them from trees, climbing frames or even throwing them up into the air.  As they mimic the way a sycamore moves it would be a wonderful autumn activity to discuss how trees disperse their seeds.

This activity may help development of:

  • Fine Motor Skills
  • Gross Motor Skills
  • How and why trees lose their seeds