Hoop Glider Engineering can be a fun science activity for people of all ages. We provide these generalizations as guidelines about what children at different ages might do during Hoop Glider explorations at the Discovery Center’s Experiment Station, at home in your living room, or at school. Listed below are science and technology process skills that children may be practicing during their explorations. Please remember: each child develops at a different rate, so some children in each age group may be able to do some of the things described in the age group before or after their own.
Toddlers can answer classification questions (either by pointing, or verbally) such as “What shape is this?” and “Which one is bigger?”
Toddlers can touch the paper, paper-clips, and straws, and think about what these materials are typically used for, and where they have seen or used these materials before.
Toddlers can point to a glider as it flies, and try to track it with their eyes.
Toddlers can also answer questions about their gliders such as: “what did the glider do after you let go?”.
Throwing hoop gliders helps younger toddlers practice their controlled release skills (their ability to let go of something at will).
At first, it may be difficult for young toddlers to release their hoop glider at will, and they may want to practice their throwing technique with the help of an older child or grown up.
Children at this age enjoy working with scissors, and typically use a two-handed grasp as they develop the hand-eye coordination necessary to make a cut on a piece of paper. Adults can help them by holding the paper for them as they cut.
Toddlers can practice pushing a paper clip up to secure it- to a piece of paper, or to a straw- with the help of a grownup.