A smidgen of science to go with this model.  In a traditional airplane all of the lift, is supplied
by the wings, but as speed increases this puts more and more stress on the wings, the answer
as was determined years ago is to use a “lifting body”. That is a plane or as in this
case a space shuttle that maximizes the strength of structure by using the body
of the shuttle itself as the wings. It has not been used heavily in the aviation world, due
to politics, but it was the only chance for a ship that needed to re-enter an atmosphere from
orbit. Unfortunately a true lifting body would by its nature be very stable as it comes down
but not very manoeuvrable at high speed. NASA solved this problem but using a large rudder
fin atop the vehicle this stabilized the side to side motion, making it as stable as the
forwards and up and down motions. The only other problem was to find a long enough
strip to land the shuttle because of the forward speed required to keep it aloft. The space
Shuttle was the end of a long line of expertiments in this type of flight. For those who
have seen the old TV series the “Six Million Dollar Man” the scene in the beginning was
a real crash of one of the early lifting bodies designed by NASA, they were flown up by
airplane and then dropped, our current space shuttle design was the winner.


cut the colored outside square section out. 

fold the lines labeled V as valley folds.  

fold the lines labeled M as a Mountain Fold. 

unlabeled lines are mountain folds as well. 

mountain fold the grey area lines and boundaries 

the grey areas should be either taped closed, or
reverse folded and tucked in to hold in place. 

then fold the lines labeled L as Mountain folds.
you may want to tape or tuck in some of the flaps 
to hold things tight.  
Here is the model (click on image for full size):

When you have finished the model you get to test it. Hold it out at arms
length and drop it. If you held it level or with the nose slightly downwards it
will glide gently down to the floor in the same position as you dropped it (nearly).
The design is very stable, if you could get 20 or 30 feet off the ground in a
closed environment you could drop it upside down or backwards and it would
right itself. Hold the model out at arms length again, tilt the model this time at
a steep angle and you will see why it is so important to the space shuttle, that it
enter the atmosphere at just the right angle. Too far either way and it would
crash, instead of land. This model is just a toy. But the real life space shuttle,
doesn't have the luxury of making mistakes.  The people who work for NASA, the pilots,
and crews, do a near impossible job, and do it so well it looks easy!