Please download the pdf instructions for the latest version.



A parachute  Throw it in the air and watch it fall down slowly.


Making the toy

1. Take the material and cut a piece about 2 hands square (sides about 12 inches/30cm long). Fold along the a diagonal line and cut off any extra so that the material is square.

Fold the material along a diagonalCut off any excess to make a square


2. Place a pea or stone in a corner and fold the material over it.

Place a stone in the corner

3. Cut four strings the same length as the sides of the material.

4. Fix a stone or pea in position either using a knot or simply by winding the string around it.

Tie on a weightA knot

This is a favourite knot: Make two loops of string, then fold one loop behind the other. Push the pea and the corner of the material through the 2 loops and pull tight.

5. Repeat this process for the other three corners so that all four have a pea/stone tied in them.

6. Hold the parachute upside down, make all the corners meet and tie the loose ends together.

Collect the strings together

7. Find a weight, a stick or some hard mud and tie it on where the four strings meet.

Tie on a weigth

Playing with the toy

Roll up the material and wrap around the string.

Throw as high into the air as possible and watch it float down. You could throw two in the air and have races to see which reaches the ground last


Problem solving

If the parachute comes down too fast try a smaller weight

If the parachute doesn't open:

  • try a heavier weight,
  • make sure the strings are even length
  • don't wrap it up too tightly before throwing .
  • make a larger parachute – the material may be too dense and heavy.


Developing the toy

Try different shaped materials and use more strings.

Try putting a small hole in the middle of the material (real parachutes are designed like this)