DIY Rainbow Spinner

DIY Rainbow Spinner

Encourage arts and crafts explorations with the DIY Rainbow Spinner! With the help of a grownup, children will love creating their very own rainbow that's just as unique as they are. All this easy-to-do activity requires is construction paper, a wooden dowel, some hot glue, and creativity. Before you know it, children will be exploring colors, shapes, and patterns as they spin and twirl their very own DIY Rainbow Spinners!

What Is A DIY Rainbow Spinner?

Based on a whirligig, or spinning toy, the DIY Rainbow Spinner is a simple craft that brings fun to any home or classroom's arts and crafts time. Made with colorful paper strips and a wooden dowel, the DIY Rainbow Spinner requires very few materials, making it a quick and easy craft that provides hours of entertainment for children.

How Can I Use This In My Lesson Plan?

Many parents and teachers may be wondering what exactly children can learn from a DIY Rainbow Spinner. The answer is … a lot! The DIY Rainbow Spinner is a wonderful foundation for interdisciplinary learning, providing an easy introduction to skills like color and shape recognition, the ideas of pattern making, and social-emotional development. Whether they're selecting their unique colors for their rainbows or twirling their toy, children will be learning through play without even realizing it!

The unique learning experiences the DIY Rainbow Spinner provides are endless. For example, when children are choosing their paper strips, talk to them about what creates a rainbow, turning the craft into a fun lesson on light and the science of colors. Or, take a social-emotional approach and encourage children to create a spinner as unique as they are with different colors that express their personality. Celebrate diversity with your child and start a conversation about what makes them unique! If in a classroom, expand this discussion to include the whole class, taking time to build community connections and celebrate what makes each and every child special.

A simple toy on the surface, the DIY Rainbow Spinner is the perfect tool for creative explorations, giving children the chance to discover many areas of learning in an accessible way.

Download our FREE printable below!

 Rainbow Spinner

Required Materials:

1Gather Your Materials

To make your DIY Rainbow Spinner, you will need to gather colorful construction paper—or hair paper—a wooden dowel, scissors, and a hot glue gun to assemble your whirling rainbow!

2Choose Your Rainbow

Cut your construction paper into eight, 11-inch long strips. Make sure your strips are a little over 1/2 inch wide. In addition to your paper strips, you will also need to cut out two small circles. You will use these circles to attach your paper strips to the spinner.

Safety Tip: Only adults should handle sharp scissors for cutting. To save time and keep little hands safe, cut your paper strips beforehand, allowing children to choose their rainbow's colors from a selection of pre-cut paper.


3Build Your Spinners

Attach one end of your paper strips to one of your circles, securing each strip with hot glue. Remember, only adults should handle the hot glue gun. Place your wooden dowel in the center of this circle and glue into place. Carefully cut a small opening into the center of your remaining circle. Guide the wooden dowel through this hole and secure the other end of your paper strips to this circle. Make sure your paper strips are secure, move freely, and aren't glued to your wooden dowel by mistake. When you spin your creation, your paper strips should move up and down with ease.

4Show Off Your Rainbow Spinner!

Once your rainbow spinner is secure, encourage children to twirl their spinner by rolling it and forth between the palms of their hands like a whirligig toy. Watch as children are amazed by the beautiful colors and patterns their spinners create while in motion.


Encourage creativity with engaging arts and crafts activities! Browse our selection of arts and crafts to incorporate creative explorations into your home or classroom.