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Hoopster: An Airplane Made from Paper Hoops

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    The Exploratorium

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Hoopster: An Airplane Made from Paper Hoops

This activity provides instructions for making an aircraft that can really fly using a straw and paper hoops! Included are ideas for building various sized and proportioned aircraft, making this a great activity for exploring how experimentation can improve a design.

Quick Guide

Preparation Time:
Under 5 minutes

Learning Time:
10 to 30 minutes

Estimated Materials Cost:
$1 - $5 per student

Age Range:
Ages 4 - 11

Resource Type:


Materials List (per student)

  • scissors
  • ruler
  • 3-x-5-inch file cards (or a file folder or some other stiff paper)
  • clear plastic tape
  • plastic straws (not the kind that bend)


  • Physical Sciences
    • Motion and Forces
      • Newton's Laws

Informal Categories

  • Arts and Crafts
  • Physical Activity
  • Transportation


To use this activity, learners need to:

  • see
  • be mobile
  • touch

Learning styles supported:

  • Involves hands-on or lab activities


This resource is part of:

Access Rights:

  • Free access


  • Murphy, Pat; Klages, Ellen; Shore, Linda


  • All Rights Reserved, The Exploratorium, ©1998


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