Bridge Building Activities With Paper Clips & Straws

Updated February 21, 2017

A fun way to evaluate your budding builder's skills is to construct a bridge with straws and paper clips. This is an excellent way to teach the principles of balance, weight distribution and ingenuity. Test the bridge's ability to resist forces that a full-size bridge would encounter. Teach a child interested in building the importance of sound design and durable construction.


Build a bridge from straws by using masking tape to hold them together. Use the straws like planks to make sections by binding numerous straws together and then attach the sections together. Add string to support the centre, like the cables of a suspension bridge, to see how much stronger the string makes the structure. Another option to give the straws more strength is to bend one end of the straw so it can be inserted into another straw. This will allow longer pieces to be constructed and can be a solution if tape is not an option.

Paper Clips

Building a bridge with paper clips can be challenging. Try either using the paper clips to hold pieces of paper together or attach numerous paper clips in a chain to use as supports. Another idea is to use the paper clips to stiffen paper. Cut paper into strips and weave it together, then unbend paper clips and insert them into the woven paper. The paper clips will act as support beams to make the paper stronger.

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Danielle Odom is a freelance writer and ghostwriter with more than 12 years experience. She is a certified medical transcriptionist and is working on a degree as a medical office assistant. As a writer she enjoys learning new things daily and is committed to entertaining and informing everyone that reads her work.