I started teaching in January, 1976, For the first 10 years of my teaching career I taught first and second grade. We used to make pinwheels for our students. We used paper, pencils, and a straight pin to create those pinwheels. We slid a pony bead onto the straight pin and then forced the straight pin into an eraser. The pinwheels spun pretty well, but they probably weren't the safest toy for our students to use.
Now I have been teaching preschool for many years. Until recently I hadn't made pinwheels for my students. That all changed about a month ago. I received a newsletter that showed a picture of the We R Memory Keepers pinwheel maker. I was curious about the tool and watched a couple of videos about it on Youtube. Now I was more curious than ever and went off to the store to buy a pinwheel maker. Turns out that We R Memory Keepers also sells packages of pinwheel attachments with long paper straws. There are 10 straws and attachment pieces in the package. The attachment pieces are the "secret ingredient" that make the pinwheels spin so easily.
I came home, cut a pinwheel out of tag, and assembled it. The pinwheel easily spun around and around. Now I was beyond excited about pinwheels.
For my students I cut pinwheels out of white tag. They used markers to decorate both sides of the tag. They were as excited as I had been when their pinwheels spun around in the wind. I made them more pinwheels out of acetate paper that We R Memory Keepers sells in 6" and 12" pads. We use those pinwheels in the sandbox at school. Instead of straws I used 1/4" wooden dowels to support the pinwheels.
Oh, by the way with the Pinwheel Maker tool you can cut pinwheels that range from 3" to 12". My favorite size is 6". You can make two double 6" pinwheels out of one sheet of 12" paper.
Well, I am now obsessed with pinwheels. I make bouquets of pinwheels for centerpieces and have my guests choose a pinwheel when they are heading home.
I use them for decorations when we have outdoor parties.
I put them on packages as a bow. Can't wait to do that at Christmas! The pinwheel bows coordinate with the boxes that I make. I use a brad in place of the pinwheel attachment pieces when I am decorating a box or gift bag. Those pinwheels do not spin, but look adorable.
I put them on the front of gift bags. I make a coordinating border at the top of the gift bag.
They're fun, easy to make, impressive looking and adorable.
Have a great day!