You will receive a variable to study. Follow the steps below:

Step 1: Creating a file

One person in each group creates and shares with the rest of the group members a Google Slides file.  The following information must be presented in any ‘concise’ manner of your choosing:

  • Your assigned variable,
  • Geared or non-geared
  • Your first name and last initials of all the members in your group,
  • State your hypothesis, and then …
  • Describe in 1 to 4 sentences how you intend to conduct your experiment.
  • Finally, devise at least 2 to 5 questions that you immediately have about how to go about doing this activity


Step 2: Confirmation

  1. Making sure your file has all the information asked for above
  2. Tell the teacher your group has completed step one and it needs to be checked. You will either be given the go-ahead or be asked to make changes.

STOP!  Before you go on, ALL students MUST watch the safety video on using the utility knives and then each person needs to individually take the safety quiz.

Step 3: Starting with the DEFAULT blade

Non-Geared Defaults

  • 2 Blades
  • 1-1/4″ Wide and 5″ long  (Width of metal ruler)
  • Flat blade tip shape
  • -20 degree pitch
  • Thin to medium thickness cardboard
  • Testing:  Single fan tunnel; Mid speed (2 clicks); All the way to the back of the tunnel

Geared Defaults

  • 4 blades
  • 2″ wide and 12″ long
  • No blade tip shape
  • -30 degree pitch
  • Medium thickness cardboard
  • Testing
    • Four fan tunnel; high speed; right in the middle of the tunnel


ALL GROUPS must start with making and testing of a DEFAULT blade.  Get a hub and dowel rods from teacher. FYI:  You will be keeping all materials in your shoe boxes. As a group, watch and follow this video

Using utility knife, metal ruler, safe-t-cut straight edge, and cutting board, cut out the rectangular, cardboard blades (2 each 1-1/4″”x 5″-for non-geared and 4 each 2″ x 12″ for geared) for your research turbine. .

KidWind-dots of glue

Measure and mark a line on your dowel rod 3-1/2″ from one end. Do this for all your dowel rods.  Using hot glue, hot glue one dowel rod per blade over the top and sides of the dowel. Do NOT put the glue on the cardboard first and then stick the dowel into that.  The trick to making this work is using ‘dots’ of glue instead of ‘streams’. Put the end of the blade on 3-1/2″ pencil mark. Make sure the dowel is centered width-wise. Wait 5 minutes before putting blades/dowels into hub

Step 4: Testing Research Blades

  • Put dowels into hub so that there’s equal space between dowels. Make sure the dowel is all the way in.
  • Face the dowel to the rear of the hub, which will be downwind, which is known as the leeward side.
  • Watch this video about using the Pitch Tool.  Use the pitch tool to set each blade to approximately negative 20 degrees for non-geared turbines and -30 degrees for geared.

Sketch” a frequency table in your composition book, using the diagram below. Put in your own variables as it pertains to your research variable. You only need to record the mean mWatts (not the Volts and Amps)

  • Take your blades/hub to the teacher to check your pitch  (The first few times)
  • Go to the wind tunnel with your turbine, your composition book with the chart, and a pencil.  Gently place your turbine on the test stand. You do NOT have to push it in tightly.
  • All students MUST wear safety glasses when at or within 5 feet of the wind tunnel.  Turn the fan on – twist the on/off knob ‘one click’
  • After the fan has been turning for a few seconds and your turbine blades are turning, click the green COLLECT button on the computer. Data will be automatically collected for 10 seconds and then automatically stop.
  • Transfer JUST the number in the mean (average) mW column to the frequency table in your composition book
  • Change the variable as you planned and test again. You should aim to have around 3 to 10 ‘samples’ or tests. For instance, if you’re testing length, you might get data on a 12 inch blade, 10 inch, 8 inch, 6 inch and 4 inch.

Step 5: Creating a Chart from the Collected Data

Note:  For most of the variables, create your charts with Google Sheets.  For those that have the windtunnel placement variable, at this time, it’s best to use Microsoft Office Excel.  See here for instructions.

Create a new Google Sheets.  Input your data and create a chart of your choice.  Option A:  Copy and paste both the chart and the table and paste  into your presentation file.  Option B:  Use the screenshot program that comes with your computer and take a picture of the table next to the graph – save the picture and insert that into your presentation

Step 6: Organizing your Presentation

All presentations will/should be slightly different.  Your team has full ‘style’ choices.  But…you should have following minimum:

  • Basics:  Your variable, if geared or non geared, your names, and your hypothesis
  • A general explanation of how you set up and conducted your experiments on your variable
  • Include the picture of the table/graph of your collected data.
  • If applicable, sketches of the variations of your variable.  For instance, if you had blade shape, you’d include pictures of the shapes you tested.
  • Your recommendations for your variable based upon the results
  • Type in any ‘flaws’ that you think may have effected the outcome of your research,

Here are some examples:  Cimi    Ashtin and Katie C      Natasha and Connor

Step7:  Give your Presentation

Cover the information that you have on your presentation. Presentations should be 60 seconds to 3 minutes long. All team members are expected to participate.

These presentation will most likely be video taped and could possibly be put up on our YouTube Channel.  Dress nicely and take this seriously.

Grading: Research work (100 pts)

  • 25 pts: Completed on time (Group grade)  People are counting on you sharing the knowledge you’ve gained
  • 50 pts: Individual effort (Individual grade)  Observable. Effort to do your share of work
  • 25 pts: Collecting, organizing, and displaying of research data and use of tools/technology (group grade)  Following directions. Completeness of work. Formatting of data on presentation page. Use of pitch tool. Use of wind tunnel and software. Use of software/instructions to create graph. Use of screenshot software to correctly save images to use on presentation page. Following turn-in procedures

Grading: Research Presentation (25 pts)

  • 15 pts: Presentation completed  and on time
  • 10 pts: Individual participation in presentation.  No talk, no points. Participation shows pride in work, acquisition of knowledge, and ownership to the task at hand