Do you want to know a fun and versatile way to teach the solar system to your toddler/young preschooler?
It’s never too early to expose your children to science—especially seemly complicated topics like the solar system. Aaron has always been intrigued by the moon and stars, so I took it a step further and decided to explore with him the entire system. We used a couple of great books we borrowed from the library as our guides (What is the Solar System and And My Place in Space). The books were good at explaining the solar system. For example, the book entitled, What is the Solar System? described the solar system as the Sun’s family. That description was golden for Aaron. All he needed to hear was the word family. He only needed to understand that these planets were high in the sky serving as the sun’s family, which didn’t take long.
Our solar system project was inspired by The Dad Lab. I found on their instagram account, a picture of what was a hand crafted spider web with branches and colorful yarn. Soon after the idea came to me to turn it into a solar system project. So we started on our adventure searching the ground for branches and collecting our materials. It took us some time to finish, but he was proud of his work when we were finally done.
In this project, we covered the following learning areas:
- Learning the order of the planets from the closest to the furthest from the sun. I asked Aaron clarifying questions such as, “what planet comes next.”
- Counting the number of planets by pointing with the index finger.
- Organizing planets by categories of small and large planets
- We first read about the solar system before digging into this project. Since Aaron can read most words, I encouraged him read much of the book himself.
- Using scissors to cut out our planets and prepare our rope (fine motor skill development)
- Using crayons to color in our planets (fine motor skill development)
- Using his pincer grasp to interweave the rope in between the connected branches, as you will see in the video below (fine motor skill development).
- Learning to use glue properly
- I created a little tune (in video) to help him remember the order of the important parts of the solar system.
To see what we did in the creation and learning process from beginning to end, click the play button below.