One Puff Paper Rockets

Flight activities with a puff of air

A puff of air sends these paper rockets flying through the air.  The flight activities use three major materials: paper, straw and tape. I would suggest you use light cardboard for the fins.  If you don't have any cardboard just use regular notebook paper.

The challenge is to create several rockets and see which one will fly the greatest distance. After testing your rockets use your imagination to create rockets that will go an even greater distance with one puff of air than your original rockets.

Materials

  • Plain sheet of paper (8 1/2 x 11 inches)
  • Pencil (larger diameter than the straw)
  • Scissors
  • Straw
  • Tape
  • Ruler

Directions

  1. Cut a strip of paper 1 1/2 inches wide and 11 inches long.
  2. Wrap the paper around a pencil in a spiral.
  3. Tape around the paper spiral in the middle and at both ends.
  4. Trim off the both ends so they are even.
  5.  Fold over the top of the rocket and tape it down.
  6. A sample rocket fin is shown to give you an idea of how to construct one.
  7. Create fins for the rocket any shape you would like. You might make several different rockets with different shaped fins to see which will fly the furthest.
  8. You can use 3 or 4 fins on your rockets when building them.
  9. See which rocket travels the greatest distance with different numbers of fins.

Our Flight activity book is a favorite with kids of all ages because they build things that will fly through the air. Activities in a Sunny Day Kite,  Flying Sticks, creating a Parachute that holds a pay load and much more in the 50 page book.   Myrna Martin

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Special notes on building the rocket

  • The main body of the rocket and fins in the picture are the same colors. A fun extension to this activity is to make them different colors. 
  • If you are having trouble attaching the fins try this. Cut the part that folds back and attaches to the rocket in half.
  • The top part of the fins can then be folded and taped in one direction and the bottom in the opposite direction.

Science behind the activity

In this flight activity the thrust of the rocket which propels it into space is the air you blow through the straw. The fins act like rudders on the rocket to keep it traveling on a smooth path.


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