Create a Pinwheel tips and tricks for making a pinwheel that spins

Materials Needed:

  • Card stock. Cut out your pinwheel using the template.
  • Tape and/or glue to hold the pinwheel together
  • Pencils, straws, or sticks to use as a support for your pinwheel
Pencils with an eraser, or a straw that you can push a pin through work best to support your pinwheel.
  • Straight pins or thumbtacks
  • Beads (optional but helps with spacing and making the pinwheel spin.)

Putting it all together

scroll down for instructions to assemble your pinwheel


Make a tape loop, and stick it to the center of the pinwheel. You could also use glue, but this tape loop will hold everything in place while the glue on the corners dries.


Fold the corners marked with a circle into the center. You will start at one corner, and move around the pinwheel folding each corner on top of the other. Put a dot of glue on the pinwheel corners to hold them together. One dot on the bottom corner seems to be enough to hold all four corners.


Thread your pin through all four corners and the back (five layers). The pin will help keep the corners in place while the glue drys.


Press and hold all five layers between your finger and thumb. Don't poke yourself with the pin!


Most of your pin will stick through the pinwheel on the backside. You may need to push the pin back-and-forth through the layers of card stock to make sure the pinwheel head can spin freely around the pin.


Beads are optional, but threading them onto the pin helps with spacing, and allows the pinwheel to spin freely.


Stick the pin into the support stick. A pencil eraser is soft enough to push a pin into, yet still support the pinwheel. Test how the pinwheel spins, and either push the pin further into the support, or pull it out a little until the pinwheel spins freely.

Use your pinwheels to model how wind turbines work!