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Alternate Activity 1: Make an Anemometer

Alternate Activity 1: Make an Anemometer
Alternate Activity 1: Make an Anemometer

Activity time: 25 minutes

Materials for Activity

  • Leader Resource 1, How to Make an Anemometer
  • Five 3 oz. plastic or waxed paper cups
  • Two plastic soda straws
  • A new pencil with unused eraser head
  • Single-hole paper punch
  • Scissors (including left handed scissors)
  • Tape
  • One push-pin
  • Permanent magic marker

Preparation for Activity

  • Print Leader Resource 1, How to Make an Anemometer.
  • Obtain supplies.
  • Make a practice anemometer so you will be comfortable leading the activity.

Description of Activity


The wind that powers a kite or a sailboat can also turn the blades of a windmill to do jobs such as pumping water or grinding grain to make flour. Today, people are beginning to use windmills to generate electricity; these windmills are called wind turbines. To be useful, a wind turbine must be located in a place where there is going to be a lot of strong wind. Scientists measure the speed of the wind with an anemometer.

We are going to make anemometers today.

Using the leader resource as a guide, help the group follow the instructions to make an anemometer.

Once it is ready, take it outside, hold it in front of you. Looking at the X on the bottom of one cup, count the number of times that one cup makes a revolution in 10 seconds.

If it’s not windy, blow on it, as hard as you can, asking someone else to see who can make it revolve the fastest.

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