Popsicle Planes!

This project was made at the Srishti Toylab. It explored areas such as reusing often useful but discarded objects like popsicle sticks and stationary, and how kids could learn abstract concepts and history, through engaging and practical methods.

At the Toy Lab, efforts were focused on fostering learning through play; not just for children but for anyone. Ideas were sketched physically with materials to understand mechanics and dynamics, which sparked finer ideas and concepts. Sketching and prototyping were almost mixed together to bring out concepts.

The final output came out in the form of “Popsicle Planes!”, a glider guide activity book that explains the concept of flight through the construction of a series of planes.

Aanders Sandell (Guide)
Exploration into methodologies of play
Iterative physical prototyping
Learning through making


This concept developed out of the initial exploration phase, where I revisited my old interest in gliders, paper planes and aeromodelling. I dug up old the Model Airplane magazines, which I would browse for hours, fascinated by the shapes and forms of different models.

Glider Guide Book

Popsicle Planes Is an activity book that explains the concept of flight and the influence of wing design on the nature of flight. It features models of real planes throughout history to understand how the wing was modified to serve different purposes. The book is printed on 380GSM brown card board.

Wing Stencils 

Each page can be detached from the stem to cut out stencils to make the planes. The only materials needed were popsicle sticks, paper, a paperclip, and a cutter to make incisions in the popsicle stick. The Guide did not recommend any particular paper, and encouraged exploring different weights of the paper, to understand the influence of the material on the nature of the flight of the resulting glider.


A total of 5 different planes models were selected according different criteria. 3 of the 5 were legendary aircraft from the past and the present. This demonstrated the development of the wing over time, and its various different purposes. The other 2 were fictional planes to turn the stuff of imagination into reality

Fiction and Flight

The Rebel Alliance X-Wing Fighter from the Star Wars movies, was added to spark wonder at the design and construction of flight in fiction, and to imagine the evolution of the wing in the future.

Do it Yourself

Here is the book to download, print and use as you please.