How to make a wind spinner with free patterns

Colourful tops image by Pontus Edenberg from

Making a pinwheel is a fun activity for younger children to enjoy. Most pinwheels can be made from materials that are commonly found in the home. Patterns for the pinwheel can be made out of any bright material or downloaded and printed off the Internet.

Once printed, one pattern can be endlessly customised by adding geometrical shapes, stripes, characters, words or other artwork to change how it looks. It does not cost anything to print the wheel spinner patterns; however, it is necessary that the paper, printer ink and printer are already owned.

Turn on your computer and printer.

Connect to the Internet.

Search for "pinwheel patterns" with your favourite search engine or use the Resource below. You can either print the page or open the image in its own window or tab and print the pattern that way.

Print the pinwheel pattern.

Cut out your pattern. Most patterns will have dotted lines, solid lines and circles. Be sure not to cut off any of the lines as they are needed later.

Using the cut out piece as a pattern, trace the exact same shape onto the card stock.

Glue the pattern onto the card stock, so that you can still see the dotted lines and circles on the printed pattern. Allow it to completely dry before decorating.

Decorate your pinwheel on both sides of the reinforced paper with markers, crayons or coloured pencils.

Cut the dotted lines to split the pinwheel into four parts. Do not cut the circle in the centre.

Carefully poke through the four small dots on the paper.

Fold over the corners of the paper so that all four holes meet, stacking them one corner on top of another in the centre circle. Push the pencil or the tip of the scissors through the paper so that you can see through the four small holes and the large centre hole.

Push the brad or paper fastener through everything, spreading the two parts out so that the folded corners won't slip.

Cut a small hole in the straw, about an inch or so from the top.

Attach the spokes of the pinwheel to the straw using the paper fastener. Be sure that the straw is at the back of the pinwheel, so that when you look at it the straw works more like a handle. Bend the edges of the paper fastener so that they are out of the way, yet still secure the pinwheel to the straw.