Boomerangs were originally developed as hunting instruments because they could be thrown with force and would return to the hunter if they failed to hit the prey. Although tradition places boomerangs as originating in Australia, even older boomerangs have been found in Europe. Children can make boomerangs as crafts and may even be able to learn how to throw a boomerang and have it return.
Although very young children may have trouble with the precision required to create an operable boomerang, they can still make decorative boomerang crafts. Cut a curved boomerang shape from brown cardboard or construction paper for each child. Give children craft supplies such as coloured pipe cleaners, glitter, pom poms, glue and paint to decorate their boomerangs with bright patterns.
School-age kids can cut out a four-arm boomerang from an 8-inch square of cardboard. Cut a triangle out of each side of the cardboard square to make an X-shaped boomerang. Right-handed children fold down the right edge of each arm of the boomerang and left-handed children fold down the left edges. If desired, children can decorate their boomerangs with markers, paint or other craft supplies.
The most effective boomerangs are made of wood, which is durable and allows children more control over the shape of the top of the arm so it will fly better. Draw a two-arm boomerang shape onto 1/4-inch plywood and cut it out with a saw. Sand each arm of the boomerang into an airfoil shape like an aeroplane wing by curving the front end and sanding down the back end to a point. For right-handed throwers, the front end should be on the upper edge of the right arm and the lower edge of the left arm when it is oriented like a "V," and the reverse is true for left-handed throwers. Kids who toss their boomerangs at different stages of the process can learn how sanding the arms helps make it fly and curve better.