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Spinning Tops Workshop

When 5 March 2022
Time 10:00 AM
Duration 1h

Make your own spinning top from common household materials.

This free online workshop invites people of all ages to make tops. Playing with spinning tops is a culturally ubiquitous phenomenon, and tops are one of the oldest toys known to humankind.This workshop will be live-streamed so that you can follow along as we build tops with educators from Brazil and San Francisco. You are invited to build your own top from home too.

Making a top sparks a learner’s curiosity and opens up many tinkering opportunities. Using common household materials, workshop participants construct their own interpretation of a spinning top as a way to explore STEAM concepts and processes.

The basic elements of a top are its body, the axle around which it spins, and weights to stabilize it. To prepare for this workshop, make sure you clear a surface to work on (the kitchen table or even the floor will do!), and collect some of these household materials.

Good materials to construct a body are:
- Cardboard
- Foam sheets
- Cereal boxes
- Plastic cups (like yogurt containers)
- Paper plates
- Plastic eggs
- CDs
- Jar lids
- Bottle Caps

You can make axels out of:
- Pencils
- Markers
- Toothpicks
- Nails
- Dowels
- Skewer sticks
- Marbles
- Golf pins
- Corks
- Birthday candles

To add weight, you might collect:
- Washers
- Coins
- Binder clips
- Paper clips
- Play-Doh
- Clay

And finally, a few good tools to have on hand (optional) are:
- Tape
- Scissors
- Glue gun
- Awl or a nail