Super Spinner

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In this activity (page 1 of PDF under SciGirls Activity: Pet Handedness), learners will construct a simple spinning top out of a circle of construction paper, a film canister lid, and a bamboo skewer. Then the real fun begins when learners experiment with the design and materials to see who can make the longest-spinning spinner. Relates to the linked video, DragonflyTV: Pet Handedness.

Quick Guide

Preparation Time:
Under 5 minutes

Learning Time:
10 to 30 minutes

Estimated Materials Cost:
$1 - $5 per group of students

Age Range:
Ages 8 - 14

Resource Type:


Materials List (per group of students)

  • a film canister lid
  • construction paper
  • a bamboo skewer
  • tape
  • scissors


  • Engineering and Technology
    • Engineering
  • Mathematics
    • Measurement
      • Circles
  • Physical Sciences
    • Motion and Forces
      • Newton's Laws
      • Rotation Motion
  • The Nature of Science
    • The Scientific Process
      • Conducting Investigations
  • The Nature of Technology
    • The Design Process
      • Invention and Innovation

Informal Categories

  • Toys


To use this activity, learners need to:

  • see
  • touch

Learning styles supported:

  • Involves hands-on or lab activities

Culture, ethnicity, and gender

  • Girls

    • Explicity developed for this group
    • Highlights STEM opportunities for this group
    • Identifies role models or mentors in STEM fields from this group
    • Uses inclusive images of people from this group


Components that are part of this resource:

This resource is part of:

Access Rights:

  • Free access


Source Collection

  • DragonflyTV


  • All rights reserved, Twin Cities Public Television, Inc., 2005

Funding Source:

  • National Science Foundation, 436260