100 Cell Tetra - Class Project

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May 30, 2002...

Dear Mr. Thyssen,
My name is Diane Hislop. I teach fourth grade in Bakersfield, California. I have been making tetrahedral kites with my kids for ten years. This year I have a exceptionally bright class. I have discussed with them in making a 100 cell tetrahedral kite. We realized how difficult this will be.

My students are very excited about the thought of making this kind of kite.

May 31, 2002...

My students finished the kite Friday (30th of May, 2002) before school started. We are using tissue paper straws and string. To attach each kite together we are using a stronger nylon string. I took several pictures of my students (see below).

This was the best activity I have ever seen for teaching cooperation. They really had to work together. After they constructed it outside the classroom, they walked it down to the office and the primary playground to show them down there. Then, they took it apart and reconstructed it in my classroom where it now hangs from the ceiling.

The office staff wants my kids to rebuild it in there for display. I don't know about that. Thanks for the great idea.

June 4, 2002...

With a little luck, some fast feet, and the heart nine year old little boy, we managed to get the monstrous kite up. I took some pictures that I am attaching. There was a rough landing which required four minor repaired already taken care of. My boys are coming at 7:15 tomorrow morning to put all ten kites back together for perhaps another flight tomorrow.

When we got back to the classroom, the boy who flew the kite wrote, "Today I flew the big kite. I am the King Kite Flier. I ran and almost slipped. The kite wanted to fly so badly, like it had a heart of its' own. This was a cool day. It was awsome.

Diane Hislop

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This version of tetrahedral is made using straws, plans for which are available from my Tetrahedral Kite Information. The plans are very suitable for class projects as you can see, promoting interest in, science, and science history (development of maned flight), mathematics and geometry, engineering structures, and even art, teamwork, and cooperation.

[photo]

Later on 7th of January 2003...

My students put together a 160 cell kite, one of your variations. Saving it for a special event in May.

Diane Hislop


Further Update recieved January 2009...

Three summers ago, my students discover that the larger the surface area, the better the kite, so we tried a 10 1/4 inch straw. They were much better.

Last summer. our IMC bought an elison die for the 7 3/4 inch kite that the tissue paper went all the way to the tip of the straw, leaving no room for air to escape.

Two months ago, I designed my own template with the 10 1/4 inch with no room for air to escape. This final kite is the most effective kite I have made. I'm excited about making these kites with my students in spring.

[diagram]
Click on the above for a Word Doc

Diane Hislop


Created: 3 June 2002
Updated: 20 January 2009
Author: Anthony Thyssen, <anthony@cit.gu.edu.au>
Story and Photos: Diane Hislop (email anthony for his email address)
WWW URL: http://www.cit.gu.edu.au/~anthony/kites/tetra/100cell/