Every once in a while I do an activity with my kids that is so super awesome that I want to scream from the rooftops “You must do this immediately!” Making a zip line with your kids is one of those activities. This was easy, super fun and a great way for our entire family to create and experiment together. Plus it combined elements of science, math, engineering and art. Go STEAM!
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toilet paper or paper towel rolls, washi tape or markers, long string or lanyard
We started with a family crafting session this morning. I put out the some recycled toilet paper and paper towel rolls and a bin of washi tape. Everyone got to work immediately. There was no real plan in place for the style of our rolls. I figured we’d come up with it as we went and we sure did. My husband went straight into airplane mode. It always amazes me at how different men and women can be. I have no clue how to make an airplane, but he hits it out of the park every time we need something that flies. As he worked he kept disappearing to get more and more materials from our art supply area. Soon the table was filled with popsicle sticks, card board, and feathers. All this stuff is optional but it was pretty cool to see how things evolved with more materials. We ended up with a chicken (don’t ask) an airplane (Ev), Rainbow Dash (Gigi, 3.5) and Elsa (D, 2.5)
Next, came our outside adventure making the zip line. We are lucky to have a porch and a gate in our front yard, giving us a great incline to work with but you can also do this inside. We tried it inside actually by taping lanyard with masking tape from the top of one wall to the bottom of the opposite wall and it worked great but we wanted to have a longer zip line so we moved it outside. Plus, we live in LA, so anytime we can take things outside, we do.
We tied four long pieces of lanyard to the porch and slid on our tubes so each string had it’s own tube. Next, we tied the opposite end of the lanyard to the gate surrounding our yard. You’ll have to get creative for this part based on your own house. Just make sure that one side is a nice amount higher than the other side so there is a distinct incline for your zip line. The steeper the incline the faster your tubes will travel.
We wanted to keep ours pretty low to the ground too because our girls are little and we wanted them to be as involved as possible. And man, were they involved.
This play went on and on. They loved it! They zipped. They ran. They raced. They giggled. It was so much fun!
What I loved about this activity the most was that everyone was involved. Our whole family played, asked questions, figured things out and experimented together.
At one point we had to stop and head to a birthday party. The minute we got home the girls went in for a second session. After more squeals of delight, my three year old turned to my husband and said “I want to do more science, Daddy. This is fun!”
This post is part of a new series I’m participating in called STEAM POWER. I’ve joined up with a few super talented blogging friends to bring you 5 weeks of STEAM activities (Science, Technology, Engineering, Art and Math) you can do with your kids. Please take the time to check out these other great posts all around the STEAM THEME: FLY. Each week for the next five weeks we will focus on a different STEAM theme. Looking forward to sharing this series with you! xo Meri
STEAM ACTIVITY: Dancing Balloons by Babble Dabble Do
Whirly Twirly Flying Birds by Left Brain Craft Brain
Square Paper Airplanes by All for the Boys
Flying Tea Bag Hot Air Balloon by Tinkerlab
M & M Tube Rocket by Frugal Fun For Boys
Soda Rockets by Lemon Lime Adventures
Indoor Boomerangs by What Do We Do All Day
Omgoodness this is brilliant. Setting it up right now! I.ll try & send a picture of us all having fun! Thank you
yay!!! i’m adding a video tomorrow. hope you can check it out. have so much fun and would love to see a pic!
I absolutely love this! It looks like the girls had so much fun!
They LOVED it! Can’t wait to upload the vid Ev made!
i love this way kids playing
Thanks so much. We had a blast!
A great combination of imaginative play and exploring science concepts! What kinds of questions did the children ask, or intentionally explore?
I did this with my kids (thanks for the idea) and we attached matchbox cars and the extra weight made them zip much faster… just a thought for you.