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Teach your little one to make a kite

It is Sankrant season and your child wants to fly a kite. While you want the little one to enjoy kite-flying, make the most of the opportunity by teaching how to make and decorate a kite. For all you know, the kite-making procedure might become a wonderful family occasion.

Basic requirement

  1. 2 thin sticks (one stick should be three feet long, the other two feet long) 
  2. 1 roll of strong thread 
  3. 1 pair of paper-cutting scissors 
  4. glue 
  5. 1 big sheet of coloured paper 

The kite frame 

First, make a cross with the sticks, placing them in such a way that the shorter stick is one-third of the way down the longer stick. Join the two sticks by tying a string tightly around the joint. Knot the string and cut it. Put glue on the string and let it dry. Notch the ends of the sticks with a knife. Slot the string into the notches and pull it tight, all the way around. Knot the two ends of the string together.

Body of the kite

Put the frame of the kite on the coloured paper. Cut the paper in a shape larger that the size of the  of the frame all the way around. Cut away the corners. Bend the edges of the paper, cover over the string and the frame. Stick them with glue. 

The bridle

Now cut a piece of the string up to the length of two sides of the kite (that's one short side and one long side). Tie one end of the string around the top of the spine. Make a loop one-third of the way down the string and knot it. Tie the other end of the string to the bottom of the spine. Cut off any extra string.

Tail the kite

Measure and cut a string that is five times as long as the kite. Cut more paper into little strips, measuring 2x3 inches. Tie the strips onto the string, 8 inches apart. Tie one end of the tail to the bottom of the kite. Now tie the kite line to the loop. The kite is ready to fly!

Decorate the kite

Allow your children to decorate your kite whichever way they want. Either use paint or crayons or colored paper. You can cut the coloured paper into the shape of a butterfly or anything else that your children like and paste it with glue on the kite body. Add as many colours as possible to make the kite stand out. 

Go, fly the kite!!

If you are flying the kite alone, face the direction opposite to that of the wind. With one hand, hold your kite in the air by the lower corner. With your other hand, hold the winder. When the wind blows, let go of the kite, giving it a little push. Move backward and let out the line. 
If you're with a partner, have him/her hold the kite in the air, with his/her face to the wind. Walk backward against the wind, letting out the string as you walk. When the wind tugs at the kite, your partner should let it go. As the kite goes up, keep walking backward, letting out more line. 

Be careful while flying kites 

Kite-flying during Sankrant is an auspicious start for the New Year. So, do not spoil the festive mood by meeting avoidable accidents.

  • Fly the kite in an open space, away from electric lines. If the kite is trapped in a wire, the current might travel down the string and it can give an electrical shock!! Steer clear of electric substations. If a kite (or anything else) falls inside the fence, don't climb the fence to bring it. It may prove fatal.

  • Never climb a pole or tower or even a tree to retrieve your kite, if it gets entangled. You may fall from a height and injure yourself.

  • Use wood or paper in your kite, as they are the safest. Avoid metal or wire as they not only affect electric wiring, but also have sharp edges, which can injure a kid or an adult.

  • Busy streets and main roads should be fully avoided for flying kites. 

  • Avoid slopes and terraces with low fencing.

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