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STEM Toy: Penny Spinners

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A few months ago I saw some fun penny spinners online to purchase and have had them on my list of things to try and make! This week we tried it out and it was a big hit with my kids! These penny spinners are fun and easy to make with your kids and I even have a printable template you can use to make your own.

STEM Toy: Penny Spinners

How to Make Penny Spinners:

Watch it in action first!

Penny Spinner Supplies:

how to make penny spinner toys

Printed templates  (download below!)
Crayons or markers

making penny spinners

Cut out circles from cardboard. Our templates are 4.5 incase in diameter. I used an Ikea kids bowl as my template when tracing, but you could print the template then match it that way, too. Cut a tiny slit in the center of the cardboard circle so the penny can slide in. If the slit is too wide, the pennies do not stay in place very well.

Print, color and cut out the penny spinner templates.  My templates for these penny spinners have 8 different fun patterns! You can download these from my subscriber library. Sign up below to get my weekly emails and get access to my whole subscriber library.

Cut another small slit in the center of your colored template so it will slide over the top of the penny. Glue onto the cardboard.

They are ready to go!

penny spinners

The Science Behind Penny Spinners: What Makes a Top Spin?

These penny spinners are a great activity to keep kids busy and entertained. Plus you can have a  talk about physics and motion. Why does a top spin?

There is actually a lot of behind the spinning of a top!  Here are the basics.

It starts with energy and torque. Torque is the measurement of a force that makes something spin. A top, or this penny spinner, has potential energy before it starts spinning. Potential energy is the stored energy, or the potential of the object to move. Once it started spinning, it become kinetic energy. Kinetic energy is the energy it has because of its motion.

The top spins on an invisible axis, called the axis of rotation.

Newton’s third law of Motion says that an object would continue to rotate on this axis until an external force acts upon it.

But, a top would have to be perfectly balanced and be on a perfectly balanced surface to spin forever. Also, we have to bring in friction and gravity. The friction slows the top causing it to wobble, and the force of gravity will pull it down to one side or the other.

Want to download the Penny Spinner templates?

They are available free for subscribers!  Sign up below to have them emailed right to you!

Try Some More STEM Toys & Projects:

Magnet Marble Mazes
Shooting Star Spinners
Gravity Spinners
Bubble Shooters
Bubble Blower Machines
Homemade CD Spinner Toy

Check out my Science Art book for more fun projects!

Science Art Book

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