Crozet Play School

Kids at Play in Crozet

Our Solar System

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The last few weeks of school are right around the corner! In the last few weeks of school we have been delving into the solar system. One of our students has been asking for weeks about space and the solar system. Since our fairy tales study was coming to an end, I decided to dive into space! This has been fun for me to learn right along with the children, becuase this isn’t a topic that I know a lot about!

The picture above was a sensory tub I set up outside using black cloud dough (black powder paint + flour + oil) and a lot of glitter! Then I added a large bag of the space toob items from safari ltd.

The children seemed extremely interested in the aspect of space travel when we began discussing the solar system in the classroom. The idea that people have traveled into space was so exciting to them! We worked together to make a large space ship in the classroom. I set up four chairs, ordered some astronaunt helmets, and then we all painted the side of the space shuttle together. I made the painting more sturdy by adding some poster board, and proping it up against the chairs. They got right to work playing and imagining space travel!

You tube has lots and lots of video from astronauts in space at the international space station and space shuttle liftoffs. We had fun picking through the different videos to watch and seeing up close what space travel is like! Their favorite video was a female astronaut showing us how to wash your hair in space!

After watching the videos we decided to make our own control panel for our space ship. I provided them with the large box and painted it silver. The children helped me add buttons (bottle caps) to the front of the control panel. I printed our words such as ON, OFF, TURBO SPEED to add details to the buttons.

They really enjoyed this space set from NASA! I placed it on a few boxes of silver kinetic sand that I found at the craft store on sale. It looks just like the surface of the moon!

We mixed up a large batch of salt dough and cut out trays and trays of salt dough stars. Each child got a handful of stars to paint and decorate for their home, and they left a star for us to hang up in our solar system in the classroom.


Along with the solar system, we have been talking about things that glow up in our night sky (moon, stars, planets, etc). I made a large batch of glowing rice using flourescent paints. Then I added tubes and sticks that glowed in the dark as well. They have been playing wiht the rice in the art room underneath the black light. We are going to do a few more glowing activities before the end of the school year.

L and L are getting ready to do a “squish painting” of the sun. We placed a few different colors of paint underneath a piece of saran wrap. Then they got to squish the paint with their fingers to create the sun.

Squishing the paint!!

They have been slowly adding star and planet stickers to a large box underneath the black light as well. I told them it was our star gazing box that we could look at during the day.

We used a very thick flour paint to make an image of the moon on black paper. We added craters to the flour paint at the end of the painting process.

Each child sat down and told me what they knew about the moon before they began their painting. I documented what they knew on the bottom of the picture.

Each child got a chance to participate in painting the moon and the sun on a large classroom solar system that we are going to hang up in the classroom. The sun even ended up with solar flare!

We are going to add some green to our Earth and a moon too! I will be sharing updates soon! Only two weeks left with the sweet group, I am so sad to see them go!

One thought on “Our Solar System

  1. You are AMAZING, Claire!!! You are such a creative force. I’m amazed at the creative energy you can muster up even at the end of the school year! So many great textures and sensory experiences you provided here. What fun for your preschoolers!

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