Silly Straw Glider



This lesson developed by Reach Out!

Recommended Age: Preschool and Early Elementary



Question

Can I make a glider that will fly out of a straw and paper?



What You Need

  1. Straw
  2. Construction paper
  3. Scissors
  4. Tape
  5. Pencil
  6. Ruler



What You Do

  1. First, lay a piece of construction paper down on your table. With your ruler, measure and mark with your pencil a strip that is 1 inch wide and 8 inches long. Then carefully cut out this strip.

  2. With your ruler and pencil, measure and mark a second strip of paper that is 1/2 inch wide and 6 inches long. Cut this strip out of the paper.

  3. Take the longer strip and form a circle or loop. Tape the two ends together.

  4. Take the shorter strip of paper and form a circle or loop. Tape the two ends together.

  5. Put the longer strip on one end of your straw. Tape it in place.

  6. Put the shorter strip on the other end of your straw. Tape it in place.

  7. Try sailing or flying your straw glider. Try sailing it with the smaller loop at the front; try sailing it with the bigger loop at the front. What happens?

  8. You might try adding some more loops or wings to the straw. Or try making a glider with two straws taped together. Or try twisting paper strips to see if that makes a difference.


What Is Happening

The paper rings or loops are like wings. The air pressure that is on top and below the loops create what we call "lift." This lift makes it possible for the object or straw glider to sail in the air.