There are a variety of paper-car school projects to teach students a range of skills. From the most basic paper and glue projects to an advanced understanding of physics, paper-car projects are a learning tool that uses a wide range of abilities. Teachers can customise any particular paper-car project for specific learning objectives by varying the amount of direction the students receive.
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Cut and Paste
The simplest paper-car project comes from a printed template. The design of the car is already printed on a piece of paper. The students start by cutting the template out of the paper. To make the car three-dimensional, students then must fold and paste the car into its final shape. These cars have no moving pieces. This kind of cut and paste project helps students to learn how to focus on details to yield a fun end product.
Another paper car option is the folding paper art of origami. A common origami car is the original Volkswagen Bug. This is a more complicated project that requires time and patience. To make these paper cars more decorative, students can use multiple colours of paper to yield unique designs. These cars have no moving pieces and are considered to be artwork. Origami projects can be confusing and frustrating. Students will typically have a high degree of pride in their origami car and are likely to repeat this project once they have mastered it.
A common project for more advanced students is the moving paper car. This is commonly used in physics classes to teach students about momentum. Working alone or in groups, and usually with a few days to complete the project, students are given a limited number of supplies to build a car. The objective is to build a car with a propulsion mechanism like a wound rubber band or a propeller. Students must build the car using only card stock, copy paper, tape, straws, rubber bands, paper clips and glue. This project not only teaches students some principles of physics, but can teach them about the value of collaboration and teamwork.
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