[VIRTUAL] Make a Paper Helicopter

Paper helicopters are not only a fun toy you can make, they are a science experiment that demonstrates thrust, drag, and gravity!  

Download a how-to guide: Paper Helicopter Instructions.pdf

  • Step-by-step instructions (w/ pictures)
  • Paper helicopter template
  • Tips, tricks, & learning opportunities

You will need:

  • Paper
  • Scissors
  • Ruler
  • Tape/paperclip
  • Markers (optional)


  1. Print out the template and follow the picture instructions.  If you can't print a template, draw a rectangle approximately 6 1/2" long by 2 1/4" high.
  2. Look at the picture and divide your rectangle similarly.
  3. Follow the picture instructions for how to cut and fold.
  4. Decorate your helicopter.  Experiment with changing its size, shape of the blades and type of paper (for larger helicopters use cardstock, poster board, etc.)

Tips, Tricks, & More Learning:

  • Experiment by dropping your helicopter from different heights. 
  • Notice which direction it spins when it falls. Is it clockwise or counter clockwise?
  • Switch the direction of the flaps (bend flap B toward you and flap A away from you.) Now which way does it spin?
  • What happens when the helicopter is falling?
    • Air pushes up against the blades which pushes them up just a little. When air pushes up on a slanted blade, some of that thrust becomes a horizontal (sideways) push. The two blades are each getting the same push, but in opposite directions. The opposing thrusts work together to cause the helicopter to spin!


Friday, June 26, 2020 - 12:30pm
Friday, July 3, 2020 - 12:30pm
Friday, July 10, 2020 - 12:30pm
Friday, July 17, 2020 - 12:30pm
Friday, July 24, 2020 - 12:30pm
Friday, July 31, 2020 - 12:30pm