by Mary Alice Cookson
Use these guidelines from the American Kitefliers Association:
1. Beginners should choose a kite that’s light for its size.
2. Protect little hands. Synthetic string works well and doesn’t cut hands, but you might have your kid wear gloves just in case.
3. Fly your kite when the wind is moderate – not too windy – and in a place free of power lines and trees.
4. To fly with your child, let out about 100 to 200 feet of line with one of you holding the kite and the other, the spool of string. Signal your partner to let the kite go so it rises naturally. Don’t throw it into the wind.
5. Don’t run! The kite will stay up if there’s enough stable wind. If the kite dives or glides toward you pull it in quickly. Experts use a hand over hand method and let the string fall loosely to the ground in small piles to avoid tangling, then they spool it in later.
6. Just be gentle and flying your kite will be a breeze!
Mary Alice Cookson is associate editor of Boston Parents Paper.