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Well we are in our final week of this half term and what a strange term it’s been .  We would like to say a massive thank you for all your hard work and we are so proud of all you done.  We have loved seeing your work and hearing all about your adventures.  To finish off, this week in science, we would like you to make windmills.

 

A windmill is a machine that converts energy from the wind into useful work by rotating.  Can you design a windmill that will work?

 

You will need:

  • Square piece of paper
  • Hole puncher
  • Scissors
  • Tape
  • Drinking straw
  • String
  • Paperclip
  • Wooden skewer

 

  1. Fold the piece of paper in half diagonally (corner to corner). Unfold it and then fold it again diagonally the other direction.
  2. Use a hole puncher to punch a hole in the centre of the paper, right where the 2 creases intersect. (if you have no hole puncher ask an adult to help you make a hole.)
  3. Use scissors to cut along the fold lines, stopping about ½ inch from the hole.
  4. Bring every other point towards the centre, right before the edge of the hole. Attach the four points there with tape.
  5. Insert a straw through the centre hole. Attach the pinwheel to the middle of the straw with tape.
  6. Cut a piece of string about 2 feet long. Tape one end of the string to one end of the straw. Tie the other end of the string to a paperclip.
  7. Insert a wooden skewer through the straw.  Make sure the wooden skewer is longer than the straw and sticks out the ends.
  8. Hold the ends of the wooden skewer and blow on the wheel.  If nothing happens , try turning the windmill around and blowing on the other side.

 

Observations:

What happens when you blow on the windmill?  Does it convert wind into work?

 

Now try this:

Try making the wheel from different kinds of paper and see which one  works the most efficiently.  Use heavier paper, like cardboard or card, and lighter paper, like tissue paper or printer paper to compare how they each work to rotate the windmill.   Could you even use different materials altogether?

Picture 1

Benji made a wonderful windmill!

Still image for this video
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