Hover Cup

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Is this activity concentrating on physical science, learners build their very own miniature hovercraft out of a paper cup. Using it, they can explore the concepts of friction and force. There is also a chance to take it a step further, modifying the shape of the hovercraft's base and seeing if that affects the craft's movement.

Quick Guide

Preparation Time:
Under 5 minutes

Learning Time:
10 to 30 minutes

Estimated Materials Cost:
1 cent - $1 per student

Age Range:
Ages 6 - 18

Resource Types:
Activity, Experiment/Lab Activity


Materials List (per student)

  • Paper cup
  • Lightweight cardboard (such as a file folder)
  • Glue
  • Balloon
  • Masking tape
  • Thick marker or pen


  • Physical Sciences
    • Energy
      • Energy and Power
    • Motion and Forces
      • Gravity
      • Newton's Laws


To use this activity, learners need to:

  • see
  • read
  • touch

Learning styles supported:

  • Involves hands-on or lab activities


This resource is part of:

Access Rights:

  • Free access



  • All rights reserved, COSI Columbus, 2009