V.T417

Create and Fly a Kite

Create and Fly a Kite

Students will create a small-scale, artful kite based on sound scientific principles. Not only should the kite be creative in design, it should also fly. The purpose of this project is to assess students’ ability to recognize the role of art across the academic curriculum. The project integrates art and science (physics).

It is suggested that you plan this project for springtime, when outside conditions are optimal for kite flying. If the weather does not cooperate on kite-flying day, it would be acceptable to delay for a day or two. However, during that time, kites should not be accessible to students for further work.

It may be that the weather refuses to cooperate. An indoor gym may be suitable for attempts at kite flying, with teams taking turns. Box fans could contribute to air movement. Alternatively, this aspect of the assessment can be eliminated.

This item has been voluntarily field-tested by Michigan teachers with a non-representative sample of students.


This is an analytic rubric. The column on the left shows the dimension that is being measured in the student’s performance. The levels across the top row indicate the performance level in the dimensions. Occasionally all dimensions and performance levels are exemplified by multiple students in a single recording.

Teacher Scoring Rubric

  • Dimension
  • Research

    Recognize connections between physics and kite flying.

  • Craft

    Apply art techniques and knowledge with competence, skill, and creativity.

  • Function

    Flight of the kite.

  • Scientific Observation / Recorded Data

    Accurate observation and record keeping of multiple kite flights.

  • Reflection

    Articulate an understanding of the application of art and physics to kite making and flying.

  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • Student demonstrates weak research by explaining basic physics behind flight and how it applies to a kite. Student provided only 1 term or example.

    View Exemplar
  • Student demonstrates quick research by explaining basic physics behind flight and how it applies to a kite. Student provided two or more terms or examples for kite features and / or scientific explanation.

    View Exemplar
  • Student demonstrates solid research by explaining basic physics behind flight and how it applies to a kite. Student provided three or more terms or examples for kite features and / or scientific explanation.

    View Exemplars
    View Exemplars
  • Student demonstrates thorough research by explaining basic physics behind flight and how it applies to a kite. Student provided four or more terms or examples for kite features and / or scientific explanation.

    View Exemplar
  • Student shows weak investigation of multiple aspects of kite design in 2 or less separate preliminary drawings. Little attention to construction, color, and detail is evident in final product.

    View Exemplar
  • Student shows some investigation of multiple aspects of kite design in 3 separate preliminary drawings. Some attention to construction, color, and detail is noticeable in final product.

    View Exemplar
  • Student shows complete investigation of multiple aspects of kite design in 3 or more separate preliminary drawings. Careful attention to construction, color, and detail is clearly evident in final product.

    N/A at this time.
  • Student shows complete and thoughtful investigation of multiple aspects of kite design in 3 or more separate and unique preliminary drawings. Careful attention to construction, color, and detail is highly evident in final product.

    View Exemplar
  • Kite was not able to fly.

    N/A at this time.
  • Kite stayed aloft for a short period with minimal control.

    View Exemplar
  • Kite successfully stayed aloft with some control in flight.

    View Exemplar
  • Kite successfully stayed aloft and was intentionally manipulated in flight consistently.

    View Exemplar
  • Flight information recorded on chart has 2 or more lines of missing data.

    View Exemplar
  • Flight information recorded on chart has 1 line of missing data.

    View Exemplar
  • Flight information was carefully and accurately recorded on chart.

    View Exemplar
  • Flight information was carefully and accurately recorded on chart with specific details.

    N/A at this time.
  • Very brief, un-concise responses to questions, or no answers provided.

    Shows minimal level of understanding of flight process.

    View Exemplar
  • Attempted to produce reasoned answers to some questions.

    Evidence of an emergent understanding of flight’s success or failure.

    View Exemplar
  • Answered all questions thoughtfully and produced complete and fully reasoned answers to most questions.

    Described reasons for flight’s success or failure.

    View Exemplar
  • Showed exemplary depth of thought in responses to questions and produced complete and fully reasoned answers.

    Accurately described reasons for flight’s success or failure with specific details.

    N/A at this time.
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