Let’s go fly a kite


Kids holiday activity of the day: Step by step directions to make a diamond kite. Finished kite with ribbons on wooden deck TIP Make the kite as big as you’d like – anything from 30 cm to 2 metres high. The horizontal dowel should be about three-quarters the length of the vertical dowel.

You’ll need

roll of brown paper that’s a colour on one side or newsprint

pencil and ruler

pair of scissors

box cutter

colour pencil or marker

2 thin straight wooden or bamboo dowels

ball of string

stapler or strong tape

strong glue such as Bostik or a glue gun

ribbons or fabric cutoffs for the tail

empty bobbin or short stick that fits easily in your hand

Here’s how

1 Use the pencil and ruler to draw a rectangle on the brown paper or news­print. Ours is 45 x 45 cm.

Paper rectangle illustration2 Cut out the rectangle.

Illustration: cutting out the rectangle

3 Fold the paper in half so it looks like a triangle.

Illustration: paper folded into triangle4 Unfold the paper and place one wooden dowel on the fold – this is the vertical dowel or “spine” of the kite. Use the box cutter to trim it so it is fractionally shorter than the paper, to leave some turn over at either end.

Illustration: paper with dowel along fold5 Place the other dowel across the first one to form a cross so they intersect slightly above the middle of the paper. Cut the ends of the stick so it is slight inside the paper’s outer edges. It’s very important that the two halves of the horizontal dowel are equal on either side of the vertical one.

Illustration: both dowels

6 Tie the dowels tightly together at the point of intersection with string. You could also glue them together for extra hold.

7 Fold the four edges of the paper to make a neat hem on all sides. Staple or glue down the edges.

Illustration: Completed kite from the back8 Make the tail: Tie a piece of string to the bottom point of the kite and tie ribbons or strips of fabric to the string.

Illustration: string with ribbons9 Roll the rest of the string around the bobbin or short stick. Tie the end of the string just above and below the point where the two dowels intersect. Use the string to control the kite when you fly it.

Source YOU Play summer 2012/13

Art direction and styling

Tina-Marié Malherbe

Production Marianne Burke

Illustrations Anton Vermeulen

Picture Peet Mocke

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