How To Make Your Own Kite
This Tuesday, we’re celebrating National Ride the Wind Day, so we decided to make our own kite in honor of the occasion. Building a kite is a fun nature craft for kids that encourages them to get creative with how they decorate it. Plus, it gives you the opportunity to work in a little outdoor physics experiment, exploring how and why kites fly. (The short answer is that only when the lift force is greater than the weight of the kite do you get flight— for a more in-depth analysis, check out NASA’s page for kids.) When you’re finished, take your kite to one of your favorite parks with plenty of open space and show it off (if you’re in NYC, try Floyd Bennet Field).
- 4 dowels (as thin as possible)
- 1 yard muslin
- light string (about 12 feet)
- paint or patterned paper
- gorilla glue
- Lay one dowel perpendicular across the second dowel. On either side (left and right) of where the dowels cross should be 7″. At the top should be 6″ and at the bottom should be 12″. Cut down any excess and create a notch where the two dowels cross each other.
- Cut remaining dowels into two 10″ pieces and two 14″ pieces to link the ends of the crosses together.
- Cut the muslin down to the shape of the cross, leaving an inch extra fabric around the edges.
- If you’d like to paint the muslin, do so now and let dry before proceeding.
- Tie the string towards the lower half of the North to South dowel.
- Glue the dowels to the muslin, wrapping the excess fabric around the dowels, and place under a heavy weight (like a book) so that the kite dries securely.
- If you’d like to attach a tail, add it to the bottom with glue. (Just make sure it isn’t too heavy.)
- Go fly a kite!