Here's a simple Make that's a change from the traditional seasonal time-filler of making cards and decorations - at first glance it's a decoration, but really it's a flying toy.
It is also suitable for a class activity, for most age-groups from Primary to High School, depending on how you present it and how much mess you're willing to put up with.
Step 1: What You Need
- a straw (School teachers: "art straws" are good here, because one straw can make two trees, and glue-stick will stick to them)
- plain paper - white is fine, but green would save you some colouring in.
- clear sticky tape
- glue stick
- pencils or pens to decorate the tree
Step 2: Making the Wings, Er, Branches
The exact number of wings is something of a personal aesthetic choice, but the best option is usually three. Each wing is a strip of paper approximately a centimetre wide (half an inch), varying in length from about 10cm to about 20cm. The smallest wing goes at the front, the largest at the back.
Now is also the time to decorate your tree. Use your chosen medium to draw on baubles, streamers and stars along the length of the strips. I strongly recommend not to add actual decorations, though, unless they are very light sequins or sticky-paper stars.
Step 3: Adding the Wings
I used a 20cm length of paper art straw. To add balancing weight to the front, I folded a few centimetres over and glued it down.
The largest wing goes all the way at the end of the straw, flush, so that the tree can stand as a decoration.
The others are glued along the "trunk", so that they look pleasing you your eye.
Step 4: Done!
You can either keep it as a decoration, standing it in the corner of your desk, or use it for its intended purpose, and throw it overhand, like a glider than a dart.