Sticky Note Rotocopters

Sticky Note Rotocopters


Create paper helicopters using sticky notes and paper clips and host your very own rotocopter competition! For more of a challenge, take your rotocopters outside and see how they fare against the wind!

Ages:
5 - 9
Est. Time:
<30 mins

How we did it:

Materials List

  1. sticky notes
  2. scissors
  3. paperclips
  1. With the sticky side facing down and away from you, cut the sticky note in half. 

  2. Take one of the pieces, fold it in half lengthwise, and then unfold it. 

  3. Starting on the unsticky end, cut along the fold line about one third of the way up the sticky note. This cut will create the propellers.

  4. Next, make one small cut on either side of your sticky note about halfway up. These cuts should not meet at the center of your sticky note.

  5. Turn the piece around so the cut side is on top and the sticky side is facing up. Fold the bottom left and bottom right sides of your sticky note into the center. Paperclip these together. 

  6. Lastly, fold the propellers so that one propeller folds towards you and the other folds away from you. 

  7. Now you can experiment with your rotocopter by throwing it into the air like a ball or dropping it from a step stool! What happens if you make your propellers longer or use a different kind of paper? Can you change the direction that your rotocopter spins?

     

    Optional: You can easily lengthen the propellers by cutting the remaining half of the sticky note in half and attaching each half to a propeller. If the propellers are too long, cut them shorter.  

  8. What's going on?


    The rotocopter works thanks to the movement of air through its slanted blades. As the rotocopter falls through the air, upward-moving air is redirected sideways by the slanted blades. This creates sideways-pushing forces on the blades, which spin the rotocopter around and around, and also helps slow the rotocopter's fall.