How to Make A Whirligig

Per leggere questo post in italiano, cliccate qui.

This is a really great project to teach about shapes or even a fun way to teach the word ‘eat’. The kids had lots of fun making the big fish and watching it twirl around.

1. Supplies:

  • several different colors of construction paper
  • Things to trace big, medium and small circles (like plates and jar lids).
  • 1 plastic bottle caps
  • 2 skewers
  • 1 drinking straw
  • glue
  • colored felt tip pens
  • tape
  • hole punch
  • awl or something to make a hole in the bottle caps
  • ruler and a pencil

Pic 2 and 3: Use your plates and lids to trace and then cut out

  • 2 large circles (big fish body)
  • 4 medium circles (big fish eyes and small fish body)
  • 4 small white circles (big and small fish eyes)
  • 2 medium triangles (big fish fin)
  • 2 small triangles (small fish tail)
  • 1 large square (big fish tail/pinwheel)

Pic 4: use your medium sized circle to make a mouth on the large fish and cut it out from the two circles for the big fish’s body.  On one these circles place the straw and 1 skewer at a as shown (make sure the straw pokes out a but on both sides). Fix with a little bit of tape.  Put some glue on and sandwich close with the other half of the fish’s body. Let the glue dry.

Pic 5:  Assemble the big fish by adding on his eyes and fins.  Make sure you do both sides.  Don’t forget to add a little black dot to finish the eyes.

Pic 6:  Use the awl to make a hole in the center of the bottle cap (this should be done by and adult).   Slide the skewer through the straw (inside the big fish), leaving a small bit hanging out of the mouth and towards the tail.  Assemble the small fish with the skewer in the center of it’s body.

Pic 7:  Use a ruler to draw diagonal lines running from corner to corner of the square.  Use your medium circle to lightly draw a circle in the center of the paper.  Color the square.  Cut along the diagonal lines, stop when you reach the circle you traced.  (You don’t want to cut all the way through or you will have 4 separate triangles and your pinwheel won’t work).

Pic 7:  Use your hole punch to make a hole at the bottom right corner of each ‘triangle’ on the pinwheel.  Use the awl to make a hole in the center of the pinwheel.  This next part is really tricky: thread the skewer through the middle hole and then through each of the other holes on the pinwheel.  Thread the bottle cap to fix closed.  If there is a lot of excess skewer sticking out, push everything down so that the small fish is almost flush with the straw and then cut off the excess.

Now spin!

This fabulous idea came from:  littlewondersdays

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