Check out this beautiful autumn leaf kite and learn how to make it!
In this post: Learn how to make these beautiful autumn leaf DIY kites! This a perfect autumn craft, and also create a hands-on Spanish learning experience for your kiddos. This post contains affiliate links for your convenience.
These autumn leaf DIY kites are an amazing way to get your children speaking Spanish with an easy nature craft. One of my favorite projects from my time teaching high school Spanish was making kites every October to learn about Día de Muertos. My Guatemalan friend shared this tradition with me several years ago, and I loved teaching my students about it. Barriletes, also known as cometas or papalotes in other Spanish speaking countries, are beautiful handmade kites flown for Día de Muertos as a way of communicating with spirits of loved ones. Every autumn, my students and I would make our own barriletes as a way to connect with this tradition, and have a special time to honor our loved ones that had passed on.
Now that I am an outdoor educator, and learning at home with my own children, I wanted to continue this tradition of making DIY kites in autumn, but with a nature spin. These autumn leaf kites are a wonderful way to celebrate the fall season with your kiddos, while spending time outside. If you celebrate Día de Muertos in your own home, this could be a fun tradition to bring to your family festivities.
Here is what you will need:
How To Make Your Autumn Leaf Kite
First, make your base. You will need to take your two sticks, one longer than the other, and then cross them in the middle. Take your string, wrap it around the sticks in the middle several times, crossing back and forth, and then tie it steady. This will form a lowercase “t”.
Next, using scissors, carve little grooves on the ends of each stick for your string to sit into. Take a long length of string and wrap and tie it around one end, resting it in the little groove. Pull it taught as you bring it down to the next stick, wrap it around a few times and keep it taught as you pull it to the next one. Continue on until you have a diamond shape.
You have the base of your kite! Yay! Now comes the fun part. Lay down contact paper, make sure it is big enough to cover your whole kite.
Remove the backing and tape down the ends to the table to keep it secure. Then have fun with your kiddos as you press things gently but firmly onto the paper. Decorate the whole sheet!
Then, to seal your autumn leaf kite, unroll another sheet of contact paper and slowly remove the back as you gently place it sticky side down on top of the other sticky side. Press all along it to remove air bubbles and wrinkles. How beautiful!
To attach it to your kite, fold one side of the contact paper over the string, you may need to cut slits so it can fold around the end of the stick. Then take your tape and secure it down. Work your way around the kite, securing it on all sides.
Lastly, all that’s left to do is attach your string and fly your kite! Tie string to the middle of your sticks, that you secured together earlier, and get outside and see if it will fly.
There are so many amazing ways to turn this autumn craft into a Spanish learning experience for your kids! Whether you are learning new Spanish words for leaves and colors, or new Spanish commands giving instructions as you craft: this DIY kite is a perfect hands-on project for Spanish learning. You can turn on some awesome Spanish music for kids, encourage your children to repeat new Spanish words with you, and make sure to prioritize connection over perfection.
Learn Spanish with your kids while you work:
Hoja (oh-hah) – leaf
Palo (pah-loh) – stick
Hilo (ee-loh) – String or thread
Papel adhesivo (pah-pehl ahd-eh-see-boh) – Contact Paper
Barrilete (bah-rree-leh-teh) – Kite
Cometa (koh-meh-tah) – Kite
I hope you love making these beautiful DIY autumn leaf kites!
If you need more autumn-inspired crafts, check out these posts: