STEAM Windmill with Gelli Arts® with Regina Scott Lesson Plan


  • Students Will Be Able To (SWBAT) recognize that moving air can be used to power machinery to do work.
  • SWBAT identify how windmills have changed as new technologies and materials became available.
  • SWBAT understand the design process behind windmills.


  • How can wind be used to help get work done?
  • What is a windmill?
  • Have you ever seen a windmill?
  • What did it look like?
  • What could the windmill be used to do?
  • How do you think windmills work?
  • What materials are windmills made of?


  • Finished Gelli Arts® prints that used the Gelli Arts® Mini Stamps
  • Windmill Template
  • Pencil
  • Ruler
  • Single hole punch
  • Scissors
  • Wooden dowel rod (one per student)
  • Paper fasteners
  • Hot glue.


  • Windmills – Buildings with sails or vanes that turn in the wind and generate mechanical energy.
  • Sailboats – A boat propelled by sails.
  • Wind Power – Energy obtained by harnessing the power of the wind.


The teacher should provide images of windmills, or if technology is available should ask the students to find examples.

For hundreds of years, people have harnessed moving air (wind) to do work. The earliest forms of wind-powered machines were sailboats. Wind pushing against the sails of a boat provided the energy to move the boat across the water, saving people the trouble of rowing.

Later, people discovered that if they attached sail-like panels to a wheel at the top of a stationary tower, wind blowing against the panels would cause the wheel and the central building, to which it was attached, to turn. The building drove mechanisms inside the tower that were used to mill, or grind, grain into flour. These wind-driven mills were called, simply, windmills. And even though wind-driven machines are now also used to pump water from wells and to generate electricity, the name windmill has stuck.

The teacher should print out a 5”x5” windmill template for each student. The teacher will demonstrate how the students can use Gelli Arts® monoprints to build their own windmills.


Step 1: Each student will create their very own Gelli Arts® monoprint.

Step 2: With their finished print, the students will use the Windmill Template to cut out the correct shape for their project. Note: Students can get creative and design their own template if they would like to try a different shape then the template provided. The teacher will encourage the class to get creative!

Step 3: Students will punch holes in the center and on each of the spokes of the windmill template they have cut out.

Step 4: Students will then use paper fasteners to join the holes created in the spokes to the center of the windmill.

Step 5: Student will attach the fastener holding their windmill onto a wooden dowel rod. This may be done using hot glue or something as sturdy.

The windmill is now complete. Allow the students to embellish as desired. Students should make sure to test out their windmill!


  • Science – The students will learn about the function of windmills and how wind can be used to help get work done.

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