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With cold and rainy weather upon us it’s essential to have some go-to rainy day activities for inside play and learning! This Spring we did an outdoor engineering challenge with paper airplanes where we tested how different kinds of airplanes flew. The kids had such a blast creating and testing their airplanes that we brought this activity inside for a paper fliers engineering challenge.
Paper Fliers Engineering Challenge
Cone Water Cups – These are so useful for a variety of crafts and activities! It’s great to have a bunch on hand. Scissors Something to prop the fan on like thick books, blocks, or boxes
- Place the box fan face up (so the air blows directly upward) with the books, blocks, or boxes supporting it on all four corners. It is essential that the fan is up off the ground a few inches so that it can pull air up into it.
- Cut the cone water cups into any shape you wish! You can cut the edges, fold them up, cut off the tip, or do combination of all three.
- Turn the fan on high and let your paper fliers go into the air stream.
- Watch how it flies, make adjustments, and repeat!
We made paper fliers that flew high, some that spun in circles, and many that danced randomly in the air stream of the fan. There was no particular goal in mind, though that is certainly something you could add to your challenge. We just had fun cutting the paper cone cups in different ways and observing how they acted differently!