Paper airplanes are almost the perfect boy toy. They're cheap, entertaining, portable and endlessly amusing.
This weekend, I'll be presenting the "Let's Fly Paper Airplanes" session at the Wisconsin Parents Association conference. The idea grew out of last year's conference experience. Son #1 and Son #2 were deeply involved in a chess and checkers session; Sons #3 and 4 were completely and totally bored.
To keep them entertained, I folded my schedule for the day into a paper airplane. They were hooked! So were the other young children in the room. Before the session ended, I had folded over 20 paper airplanes and the air was littered with formerly flat paper.
I realized I'd stumbled onto something and proposed the session, which is turning out to be hugely popular. Over 80 people have already signed up for a session intially scheduled for 40; another adult has been enlisted to facilitate a second session.
Can't make it to the conference? Check out these links and begin an exploration of flight right at home:
http://www.10paperairplanes.com/ -- This site has 10 different designs and explicit, animated instructions of how to fold each.
www.paperplane.org -- Your kids will love the intro to this site -- I guarantee it! The added bonus is lots of interesting info about paper airplane design, history and aerodynamics from the current Guinness World Record holder for the longest time aloft.