Make a Spinning Top Using Cardboard and Marbles

Objective: To make a top that spins well.

Hint: weight needs to be low to the ground and top must be balanced.


  • Cardboard – corrugated cardboard from a box
  • Marbles – 1 per top
  • Bamboo skewers
  • Glue gun
  • Markers, colored pencils, or crayons
  • Pennies or washers – 4 per top
  • Scissors
  • Pencil
  • Plastic cup 


  1. Trace a circle on the cardboard and cut out.
  2. Make a hole in the center with scissors.
  3. Decorate the top with markers, colored pencils, or crayons. Bright colors and bold patterns work the best.
  4. Use hot glue to attach the marble to the underside of the top. The hole in the cardboard gives the marble a place to sit, but it won’t fit IN the hole.
  5. Glue 4 pennies around the edge of the top on the underside. These give the top weight, which really does increase the spinning time!
  6. Adult job: you may be able to cut the skewer with scissors, but if too thick, garden clippers will work.
  7. Color the skewer with a Sharpie.
  8. Glue the segment of the bamboo skewer to the top side where the hole is. Use a LOT of hot glue, and hold the skewer upright until it dries.
  9. You are now ready to test out your spinning top! 
Activity by Karen McVay, Sprague Site
Photo Credit & Inspiration:
Posted in Activities, After School, Art, At Home, Sprague, STEM.