> Mini Themes
Kites are one of the first things that come to mind for celebrating
springtime. These activities are
appropriate for celebrating various events listed in the themes
column and the topic of weather conditions: windy.
A little history and background about kites: Kites have been
used by many cultures to celebrate special events and
occasions. Kites have been around for two thousand
years. It is not known for sure who or where the kite was
invented, but China is credited with the invention because they were
the first to record their use in legends. Japan and Thailand
and other countries also recorded the use of kites in their
legends. Marco Polo, the great explorer introduced the kite to
Europe in the 13th century. The kite was mostly used as a
children's toy, but it was later used for scientific purposes:
Benjamin Franklin used it to show that electricity was present
during a storm, and it was also used to record temperatures.
It has also been used for military purposes.
The kite is inducted in the National
Toy Hall of Fame.
Some special celebrations that we can
tell about to our children that involve flying kites are:
The Cherry Blossom Festival in Japan celebrated in April:
To celebrate spring in Japan, people have picnics under the
blossoming cherry trees. Children fly colorful kites.
* Children's Day in Japan:
is also another special occasion for celebrating and flying kites and
traditionally the kites are in the shape of a carp fish.
* Chinese New Year
(Spring Festival) - the kite is a Chinese invention.
Activity #1: Viewing Kites Around the World
Share some of these beautiful images and information with the children and tell
them kites have been used for a long time by children and adults
from around the world
2. Kite information at wikipedia.org
3. Now, let's look at some unusual kites. It is hard to
believe, but these "birds"
are actually kites by a Japanese master.
4. Various modern
5. Chinese kites: information
Activity #2: Homemade Toy >Let's Make a Kite that can Fly!
1. Easiest Kite: The
Bumblebee A Simple paper fold kite
This small kite is ready in a couple of minutes after gathering a couple of
1 sheet of standard copier paper, thread, stapler, hole punch,
scotch tape, pencil
Optional: Decorate the piece of paper with crayons, coloring
markers or pencils
Suggest a holiday or celebration theme to the children children first
to draw and color the piece of paper before the kite assembly. For
very young children, select a theme and print a coloring page
image on both sides of the paper that is appropriate for the
celebration from the links listed below:
* Spring season: spring
theme, flowers or
* Chinese New Year (Spring Festival) - choose
an image of one of the 12 animals of the Chinese Zodiac >
Dog, Dragon, Horse,
Ox, Pig, Rabbit,
The Vietnamese substitute
the rabbit for a cat.
The kites below require an adult's assistance, and can be made in 15 to 20
minutes once the materials are gathered.
Sled Kite: Ages 4+
This one is very similar than the one above using regular paper -
about 12" x 18" (the large construction paper size).
You can find wooden barbecue skewers (very inexpensive and sold in
packages in the supermarket).
and Make a Kite: PDF Document
1. The lyrics to Let's Go Fly a Kite Song
2. Kite safety tips, and instructions for 3. Homemade
Kites with detailed instructions:
*Bumblebee Kite (same as above)
*Newspaper Kite - good for recycling theme
and Earth Day celebrations
*Traditional Diamond Kite
Activity 3: Fly
a Kite Online Story time (3+)
You can also integrate this lesson plan and read the online story
"Fly a Kite. This lesson features decorating a coloring page featuring a kite,
and an adorable printable kite craft at our sister site, DLTK-Kids.
Activity 4: Kite Flying Safety Tips
It is important particularly with older children to discuss when and
how to fly a kite.
Kite Flying Safety Tips
Never fly a kite:
*Near electric lines or poles.
*With metal parts or lines which will attract
*Use fishing line or wire to fly a kite
*In the rain, the line can also carry electricity.
*Near the edge of a steep hill or slope or too close to an airport.
*Near ditches, stones, trees, and traffic or animals.
If a kite gets caught up in a tree or pole is best to leave it
alone! Climbing high places can be very dangerous.
Activity 5: Music - Sing Disney's Mary Poppins song Let's
Go Fly a Kite
Now with your new kite, or kite craft, celebrate with the
grand finale, sing Disney's Mary Poppins, Let's
Go fly a Kite
Have a great Kite Day!
Kite Month (March 31st-April 30th) Teacher resources, kite
plans, kids printable activities
the Classroom at The Drachen Foundation
Letter K Kite printable activities
External Links for Homemade
A Simple paper fold kite
Paper Sled Kite
for three homemade kites
plans for free download
at The Drachen Foundation
You need 11"x17" paper and adjust printer settings