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Saturday, September 24, 2011

How to Make a Toy Parachute - 4 Easy Steps and 4 Household Items

Anytime is a good time to fit in a little bit of science. Learn about air resistance (opposition towards the motion of a body by the air) as you make this cool toy parachute using just four simple household items. You will need a small white kitchen sized garbage bag, string, a washer, and some scissors. Then all you need to do is to follow these four easy steps for parachute fun either indoors or out.
1. Gather the supplies mentioned above. Cut a circle out of your garbage bag by cutting straight across the bag, about three quarters of the way up from the closed end of the bag. When you are done, you will have a parachute shaped circle.
2. Cut four small holes evenly around the edges of the parachute circle that you just made using a North, South, East, West pattern.
3. Cut four pieces of string 15 inches long. Insert one piece of string into one of the holes you made. Pull one end of the string through a large washer and tie a knot to the other end of the string. Continue this step by inserting the other pieces of string into the other three holes, making sure they are all connected to the washer at the bottom.
4. The parachute is finished. Now all you have to do is to hold your parachute up in the air and watch it float to the ground.
It would be fun to attach a small green army guy to the washer just to make it more realistic. Let the older children enjoy making this project due to the size of the washers and the use of scissors. The little ones can then enjoy flying them with supervision. We made several toy parachutes and held a contest to see whose parachute came down the fastest. It was also fun to decorate the parachutes using colored markers. This is one easy way to show your children how cool it is to learn about science and have fun at the same time.
Jodie Herrera is a former elementary school teacher and current stay-at-home mom. She has four children and loves to write about family fun. Check out her blog at [] to see a step by step video showing how to make this cool toy parachute and other fun ideas for blocking the yawn.