Summer/Fall 2012

The last time I “talked” with you, we were experiencing a very early spring. It was wonderful. We are now begging for rain and a break in the heat and sunny weather. I guess we are never satisfied. Hopefully, your summer is going well, and that you have had lots of chances to fly kites.

Kites…on a Roll® News

We are learning how to use social media. We have a Facebook page–facebook.com/kitesonaroll, a Linkedin membership and a Pinterest board. Sometimes, I miss the telephone conversations, but we would love to hear from you through those media. Please contact us with kite information, a kite question or just send a “hi”.

As it gets closer to school planning, consider kite making for the 3 R’s: Reading instructions, wRiting decorations on the kites, aRithmetic for correct measurement. This is also a good activity for the beginning of the school year because the kids still have summer energy that can be harnessed for the wind.

Please note that shipping charges, with UPS and USPS have increased.

Hints for an Easier Activity

I recently found an interesting website explaining how kites fly. The site comes with 2 descriptions, one more scientific than the other, but basically covering the How. Visit http://www.my-best-kite.com/how-does-a-kite-fly.html and http://www.my-best-kite.com/simple-explanation-for-how-kites-fly.html.

If your kitemakers feel that they have indeed created a flying masterpiece, you might want to suggest that they sign, date and frame (or leave alone) their artwork to hang on a wall. That makes the kite a year-round objet d’art.

Someone passed on this suggestion: Mr. Clean’s Magic Eraser works well on our kite sails when there is a mistake made with crayons (writeable coating on the Sled and Malay Bird) or oil pastels.


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Winter/Early Spring 2012

I just had to put Early Spring, especially since a large number of gardening catalogs are arriving in my mailbox. Everyday is that much closer to Spring. Definitely time to bring out your kites, repair them, fold them away carefully and check your string. Making kites is also a good winter project. This is the time to plan for your spring kite event and check out National Kite Month (March 31-May 6, 2012). Register your event at www.nationalkitemonth.org for a chance to win prizes.

Kites…on a Roll® News

We found an informative website that might give you some kite information in an easy format: www.nyke.org, the site of the New York Kite Enthusiasts. The section About Kites has two sub-topics–Kite Types and Kite Basics; they are quite helpful.

Another site that would give helpful information is www.skydelight.com/dic.html. This is a rather large dictionary of kite terms. Pick and choose those definitions that are relevant to your project.

Please note that shipping charges, with UPS and USPS have increased.

Hints for an Easier Activity

Be aware that wind at ground level could be manageable, but that wind above ground, or wind that is blocked by trees and buildings is quite different.

We have included The Beaufort Wind Scale on our Links page. Even though this scale was developed for sailors in 1805 by British Rear-Admiral Sir Francis Beaufort, it is very helpful for kite fliers. By looking to see what is happening to leaves, smoke, and other environmental action, you can gauge how good the wind will be for your kite. The best kiteflying winds range from a steady 4-20 mph.

When cutting out the patterns, look for apial symmetry–a fancy term meaning that the kite must be exactly the same on the left side of the spine as on the right.


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Fall 2011

Sometimes I combine seasons for my newsletter. This time I just don’t have the heart to write Fall/Winter 2011. Tomatoes are just turning, deer still have a warm tawny colored coat, crickets are chirping and high school bands are practicing.

Kites…on a Roll® News

Wildwood NJ is the site for the annual American Kitefliers Association National Convention. The dates for this sky filled event are Sept. 26-Oct. 1, 2011. Contact Maggie Vohs at 541-994-4252 or cameo@wcn.net for more information. If you can’t be there, go to www.aka.kite.org/calendar to find a kite event near you.

Kiting is definitely international. The word “kite” translates into so many languages, e.g. in Dutch it is vlieger, in French it is cerf volant, in Spanish it is cometas while in Mexican it is papalote, which also means butterfly. Each word has its own story or meaning. What fun to discover them all! Check out our www.kitesonaroll.com/globalization.htm for the international connection. To find out about kites in specific cultures, visit www.drachen.org/learn/kite-cultures.

Hints for an Easier Activity

I saw an idea for an activity for younger children that might be a good project for teaching the value of friendship. Visit http://www.surfnetkids.com/friendship_crafts.htm. The site discusses friendship crafts, those art projects that can be made with friends, for friends, or ice breakers. There are so many reasons for this project. Kite making, to me, is one of those perfect friendship projects to be enjoyed while making and flying.

Looking for a brief description of basic kiting: go to www.drachen.org/learn/kite-basics. You’ll find many concepts described.

Sharpie has just come out with a new highlighter with great colors that won’t dry out, smear or bleed through. Ask for the Sharpie Marker Gel at office supply or craft stores.


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