A little experimentation with wire, one of my favorite mediums, had my children in awe. I've made a number of things for them, but this simple toy impresses them most because it is set in motion by a little nudge. This twirly toy is quite simple, but so magical for young kids to watch. I hope you and yours enjoy it as much as we did!
The materials you need are:
*wire (18 gauge is best but 19 gauge is easier for kids to work with because it is easier to bend)
(nail and hammer)
Wrap wire around a pencil. Two inches around the pencil is sufficient.
After you remove the spiral wire from the pencil, you can start to pull and stretch the wire so that each coil is about 1 cm apart. Although it is necessary to experiment with the distance in order to make it work for you.
Cut a piece of wire (approximately 3 1/2 inches long) and loop ends into small circles, then bend wire into a semicircle.
Insert the spiral into the looped ends of the newly formed semi-circle.
Insert one end of the spiral into a cork base. Tip: Create a pilot hole in cork with hammer and nail first.
Now you can create a little character out of paper to twirl around the spiral. I also thought of monkeys, acrobats or spacemen for this project. And then you use a glue gun to sandwich the semi-circle with your paper character.
Bring the character to the very top, give it a little nudge and watch it twirl down!
Final tip: If character does not twirl down, slightly spread coils apart. If character slips down without twirling, slightly squeeze coils together