Science Experiments at Home

DIY Anemometer

Science Experiments at Home

I never would have thought I could help my son make his own anemometer to measure wind speed! How cool!


Dr. Mollie Cule Reboots the Robot inspired me to give it a try.

This book breaks down the experiments into easy to follow steps, but my favorite part is the language they use to explain WHY things happen. It exposed my son to Science vocabulary in a way that was entertaining, age appropriate, and easy to comprehend!

Materials to Make an Anemometer:

  • 4 small paper cups
  • 2 plastic straws
  • stapler
  • tape
  • pencil
  • thumbtack


Step 1: Staple a straw to the tops of two cups. Make sure each of the cups are facing opposite directions.

anemometer 2

 Step 2: Arrange the straws in an X and tape them in the middle. Try to make sure they are level and at a 90 degree angle. 

anemometer 3

Step 3: Draw a dot or shape on one of the cups. This will help you count the rotations and calculate the wind speed.

anemometer 4

Step 4: Attach the straws to the top of a pencil by putting a thumbtack through the middle of the straws and into the pencil’s eraser. Make sure the thumbtack is secure, but not too tight so it still allows the cups to spin.

anemometer 6

Step 5: Bring your anemometer outside and let it spin. Start a timer for one minute and count how many times the anemometer’s cups spin around by watching the one marked cup. Keep counting until the minute is up. You’ve measured the wind speed in revolutions per minute, or rpm.

anemometer 7

 Knowing how fast the wind is blowing helps meteorologists predict the weather.

Thank you to World Book and Dr. Mollie Cule Reboots the Robot for sponsoring The Activity Mom. 


  1. Maricris Villareal says

    Thanks for this, my daughter loves it! We used a paper clip instead of a thumb tack, it stuck to the pencil better, and is safer for my daughter.


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