This instructable will give you the step by step to create your plane out of recycled paper using cheap and easy to use materials.  Your plane could be used to illustrate a variety of ideas in a classroom as well as make a cool fun toy to play with!

This is a easy and cheap creation to add to any classroom lesson.  Anyone younger than second grade will need more than one day of work, and pre-cut items might be helpful.  Anyone younger than 4th grade you may want to break the lesson up.  Do not fear, any K-12 grade level can be successful with this, you just might need to modify what steps they do.  Pre-cutting templates for instance might be helpful.  Working in small groups may be a good idea.  You name it modifications can be made and I'm more than happy to help you come up with those modification. :)

So let's get crackin' at making this fantastic upcycled paper airplane toy/model that can be used in a multitude of teaching lessons!

Please see my other paper craft instructables (All of which could be created using recycled paper) for other ideas as well:

Pirate Paper Craft (EASY)

Goldie Locks (Little Girl) Paper Craft (Easy)

The Muffin Man or Chef Paper Craft (EASY)

Swan Paper Craft

Lesson Ideas:



Learning about how planes work

The history or planes

Wright Brothers

Following basic directions

Following a pattern

Learning how to write expository text, narrative, instructional text

Art lesson for any season

Learning new key words (these can very from lesson to lesson)

Earth Day Lesson

Learning about recycling, reusing, reducing, and upcycling


I'd love to hear any ideas you might have for lessons!

Step 1: Materials Needed

Materials needed:

Old Paper (newspaper, damaged books, scrap paper, thin cardboard)
Glue (Elmers) (White glue is best but I did this with rubber cement)
Templates (these can be printed out on the back of already used paper)

Materials Recommended But Not needed:

Paper Clips
Permanent Marker (many colors or one)
White Paint
White Out
Tooth Pick
Exact Knife

Recycled Paper is not the only way this pirate could be made, some other thoughts on what you could create this guy out of are listed below:

Aluminum cans
Paper mache
You name it you could likely use it!
This is great! I needed a project to do with my second graders for Earth day and we are reading about the Wright Bros. right now, this is fantastic!
Very cool! Let me know how they turn out!
We did this today and it turned out fantastic! Thanks for the great idea!
I'm so glad to hear that! Do you have any pictures, I would love to see them!

About This Instructable


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Bio: I adore instructables and use it when I'm playing with ideas for my students (I'm a certified art teacher and the Art Director ... More »
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