These paper and straw rockets are really easy to make with our free printable straw rocket template, and a great STEAM activity that kids will love.
Use our free printable straw rocket templates to design your own rockets, then blast them off into space! This fun activity offers lots of opportunities for STEAM learning, and is also lots of fun!
I needed an activity that the 8 year olds and the five year old could all do together. Something easy, but fun, something easy enough for the little one, but interesting enough for the older kids. These simple paper and straw rockets were the perfect activity!
What Kids Learn When Making Straw Rockets
Making straw rockets is a great STEAM (science, technology, engineering, art and math) activity for kids of all ages. It’s easy enough to do at home or in the classroom and offers lots of opportunities for scientific thinking and learning.
Making and experimenting with straw rockets introduces kids to lots of scientific concepts. Younger kids learn about cause and effect as they explore how blowing air into the straw propels the rocket. They develop an understanding of force and motion, observing how different amounts of air blown into the straw affect the distance the rocket travels. Older kids learn about the concepts of thrust, drag, and lift. They gain an understanding of how the shape and size of the rocket, as well as the force applied, affect its flight trajectory. Through trial and error, they can experiment with different designs and make adjustments to optimize the performance of their rockets. This hands-on activity encourages kids to think critically and make connections between actions and outcomes.
Making straw rockets also fosters creativity and problem-solving skills as kids design and decorate their rockets, and make sure they work correctly. There is also lots of opportunity for language development and social skills as kids work together sharing ideas.
Rockets also inspire lots of countdowns, kids can work on this important math skill with this rocket ship backwards counting printable activity.
This fun and interactive activity not only sparks their imagination but also instills important skills and concepts that can be applied in various areas of learning and life.
Supplies for Making Paper and Straw Rockets
To make a paper and straw rocket you’ll need a few basic craft supplies:
- The printable straw rocket template (download below) or some paper
- Coloured pencils or markers to decorate your rockets
- A pencil
What type of straws are best?
We used plastic bendy straws for our straw rockets as the bend in the straw makes them easier to use, but you can use any type of straw, paper or plastic, just make sure that the straw you choose is smaller in diameter than the pencil.
Do you need to use the printable template?
You don’t need to use the printable straw rocket templates. You can make your own paper tubes, and you can attach other paper shapes (eg fins, or a nose cone) to the tube if you wish. Using the template makes it easier for younger children to make the rockets and is a good starting point for older children who can then go on to experiment and make their own rockets.
How to Make a Straw Rocket
To make your straw rockets start by printing out the straw rocket templates and choosing which template design you will use and adding some colors and details to it with markers or pencils. You can add whatever designs you like, we had fun drawing people looking out the rocket windows, and adding our rocket’s name.
Once you have added all the colours and designs you want, cut out the rectangular template. Using a pencil that is a little wider than your straw, roll the paper rocket template around the pencil and glue or tape along the long edge to make a paper tube.
Flatten the top of the paper tube and tape it closed securely.
Now you are ready to put the paper rocket over your straw and 3, 2, 1… BLOW!
Your rocket will blast off into the sky!
Free Printable Straw Rocket Template
To make it easy for little hands to make these paper blow rockets we made some free printable straw rocket template.
There are four different designs, each with lots of space to add colours and your own creative ideas.
This printable is an A4 sized pdf file, you will need a pdf reader such as adobe acrobat to open it. It will fit to print on US ‘letter sized’ paper, just be sure to select ‘fit’ or ‘shrink to fit’ from your printer options to allow for printer margins.
Please remember that the printables at picklebums.com are for personal use only, you may not sell, share, or link directly to these files.
Straw Rocket Experiments!
There are lots of fun ways to experiment with your straw rockets and extend on the learning.
Encourage your kids to experiment and see what happens to their rocket when they blow gently and what happens when they blow really hard!
What happen when you blast your rocket off vertically, straight up, and what happens when you blast it off horizontally?
What can you do to make your rocket fly further?
Try adding some paper fins to your rocket, or a nose cone. Do they make your rocket fly better, or further?
More Easy STEAM Ideas for Kids
If your kids love exploring and experimenting they might also love these easy STEAM activities: