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Kite Homemade Craft | Kite Theme - Lesson 1 | Alphabet Letter K
Preschool Lesson Plan Printable Activities

Themes

Activities: Instructions and Suggestions

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Alphabet >
Letter K >
K is for Kite

Crafts | Homemade Toy > Kite theme

Holidays & Events >
*Jan. or Feb. > Chinese New Year
*April > Nat'l Kite Month
*May 12 > Kite Day
*June 15 > Fly a Kite Day
*June 30th > Sky Day

Inventions Kids Love > Toys and Games > Kite theme

Music > Song > Let's Go Fly a Kite

Multicultural > History of Kites &
View Kites from around the world

Online Story Time > Fly a Kite

Seasons > Spring > Flying a Kite

Safety >
Kite Flying Safety

Science
> Weather > Windy

Themes > Mini Themes > Kites

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:  
This 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 alike:
1.  Kites 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 Japanese kites. 
5.  Chinese kites: information about Chinese kites

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 materials:
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 flying insects
* Chinese New Year (Spring Festival) - choose an image of one of the 12 animals of the Chinese Zodiac > alphabetical order:
Dog, Dragon, Horse, Monkey, Ox, Pig, Rabbit, Rat, Rooster, Tiger, Sheep, Snake
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.

Paper 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).

Fly 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 electricity.  
*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!

External Resources:
*National Kite Month (March 31st-April 30th)
Teacher resources, kite plans, kids printable activities
*Kites in the Classroom at The Drachen Foundation

External Links for Homemade
Kites:
A Simple paper fold kite

Paper Sled Kite
    
Instructions for three homemade kites (PDF document)

Kite plans for free download
at The Drachen Foundation
You need 11"x17" paper and adjust printer settings

To view updates to these activities visit: http://www.first-school.ws/activities/occasions/kiteday.htm
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