Straws Circle Paper Planes – S.T.E.M. for Kids


We love Paper Toys. As you can imagine, my kids have finally “gotten into” Paper Planes. Well.. they have been trying to make paper planes for quite some time now and are always inventing their own too (watch the video of my son’s creation below.. yes it is basic, but we all start our DIY journey, somewhere, right?).

Simple Paper Plane Gliders - fun paper toy that can easily be extended to a STEM activity
First shared in April 2016

I thought it would be fun to make some these super flyers with them – they are not your traditional Paper Plane in that you DO need scissors, tape and most importantly a straw, but they are a fun simple science activity.

As you can easily turn this circle paper plane how to into an exploration…. the best thing about these planes however, is that they fly really well and in nice straight lines.. making them great for a game of catch (a bit like frisbees).

Straw & Circle Paper Planes – materials

  • light card stock (though paper works too.. you may need to experiment!!)
  • scissors
  • a straw (normal length)
  • tape

Straw & Circle Paper Planes – How To:

You can either watch the video or check the written instructions BELOW the video if that is easier for you! Make sure you scroll down and check out my son’s paper plane video too!

Straw & Circle Paper Planes – Written Instructions:

1) You will need two strips of light card, we used a strip cut across the bottom of a sheet of card and one along the length. Roughly an inch wide. If you don’t have a long piece of card, you can cut 3 strips approx 5inch x 1 inch. And tape 2 of them together to make the LONG strip.

2) Tape your strips to make two circles – one large one small.

3) Tape to your straw.

And YES, THAT is how very easy it is to  make these.

S.T.E.M. extension ideas:

A reader asked me for the science behind these paper planes – and I found this resource explaining how these planes work.

  1. What happens if the straw is longer or shorter?
  2. What happens if you use a stick instead of a straw?
  3. What happens if you make the circles the same size?
  4. Can the plane fly in both directions (large circle at front OR back?)
  5. What if you shape the circles into a triangle of square?
  6. What if you use different materials?

Have a guess at what you THINK may happen, write it down and then experiment. Compare your results!

Check out this simple Paper Plane video:

Hope you have fun with your paper planes!!!!

We have many more great Paper Toys for you to try out here:

The Circle Plane Video is also available on YouTube