Watt Watchers of Texas: Texas is Too Good To Waste™

Illustrating Wind Energy: Kites

Grade Level:

Activity Overview: Where does electricity come from? Electricity comes from energy that is created from a source or a fuel. Wind is one energy source. Kinetic energy, the energy of things in motion, can be found in air’s movement around the world. Humans harness that energy through wind turbines, which convert the kinetic energy of wind into electricity.

Wind is a very powerful source. Think about the strongest winds that you have ever been in, how much did it make things move around you? Have you ever seen wind from a hurricane or tornado move trees, cars, or houses? Wind is a powerful source of energy. So if wind is so powerful, why don’t we use it for all of our energy? There are challenges with harnessing wind energy. Wind is unpredictable, so we can’t control when it happens or how strongly it happens. However, wind is a renewable resource, which means that the resource replenishes itself faster than humans can use it. As long as the sun is still shining, wind will always be blowing somewhere on Earth.

Materials:

  • 8.5”x11” piece of paper
  • wooden skewer or drinking straw
  • kite string
  • ribbon (optional)
  • scissors
  • hole punch (optional)
  • tape

Procedure:

Students build and color a paper kite. The class takes a few moments outside to see if the wind is strong enough to move their kites. It’s better to explore this on a windy day, as a still day will not provide enough energy to take the kite on the wind. If it’s a still day, explain that the wind does not contain enough kinetic energy to move any other objects. Similarly a still day is not sufficient enough to move a wind turbine.

  1. Fold the piece of paper in half width-wise (hamburger style).
  2. Draw a line from the top about 1 inch from the folded edge to the bottom about 1 inch from the open edge.
  3. Fold the paper along the line just created.
  4. Flip the paper over and repeat steps 2 and 3.
  5. Open the back flap and tape the two sides together along the crevasse.
  6. Cut the skewer or straw in place. Lay it across the width of the kite tape it down.
  7. Flip the kite onto the reinforced side and straighten the spine edge of the kite.
  8. Place a piece of tape around 1/3 of the way down the spine and about 1 inch from the bottom folded edge to reinforce the spine.
  9. Cut or punch a hole in the reinforcement tape.
  10. Tie the string through this hole with a strong knot.
  11. (Optional) Decorate your kite with different crayons, markers, or pencils. Tape a length of ribbon to the bottom end of the kite.

TEKS

ART.1.2A, ART.1.2C, SCI.1.8D

Adapted from: Instructables Easy Paper Kite for Kids

Printed from wattdev.wpengine.com. Copyright © 2018 The University of Texas at Austin.
linkedin facebook pinterest youtube rss twitter instagram facebook-blank rss-blank linkedin-blank pinterest youtube twitter instagram