Space is big, dark and cold. There is no air or water in space. Astronauts explore space in specially designed spacecraft called spaceships. Robots are also used to explore space. The only place in space that people have been to is the moon. Some people think that there may be life on other planets. Planets are in outer space. There are 9 planets: Mercury, Venus, Earth, Mars, Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, Neptune, and Pluto. The Sun is in space and is a huge ball of fiery gases.
Astronauts are community helpers. Talk about how astronauts get to the moon and survive their visits. Talk about what they wear, how they breathe in space, and what they eat. Discuss why astronauts go to the moon. Ask the children if an astronaut could bring back a crater. Talk about where the space shuttles take off and where they land. Show pictures of the moon. Talk about how there aren’t any plants, people, or animals on the moon. Ask the children what people, plants, and animals need that they can’t find on the moon.
Moon Day is celebrated on July 20th each year because the first people landed on the moon on that day in 1969. The Journey was made in the spaceship Columbia by three American astronauts**Neil Armstrong, Edwin Aldrin, Jr. and Michael Collins, who served as pilot. Neil Armstrong was the first to set foot on the moon saying, “That’s one small step for man, one giant leap for mankind.” Then he and Edwin. Aldrin walked on the moon for about two hours, where they planted an American flag, gathered rock samples and took photographs.
There are many faraway objects in space. Some of these are moon, stars, and planets. We live on a ball-shaped planet called earth. There are eight other ball-shaped planets. These nine planets move around the sun and, along with their moons, make up the solar system.
We learn about space by looking at it through instruments such as telescopes and by sending specially trained people called astronauts into space to find out more about it. Space is big, cold and dark. There is no air or water in space. The only body in space that people have actually visited is the Moon. Some people think there might be life in other parts of space.
Show the children pictures of the sun, a full moon, a crescent moon, and a star. Discuss the shapes of each one. Have the children trace a circle, crescent, and star shape in the sand. Then have the children try to make these shapes by gluing thick yam on construction paper.
Astronaut in Space Activity…
Have the children dramatize an astronaut flying to the moon. First they prepare for their journey by putting on their space suits, goggles, helmets, and space gloves. Then they hook up their oxygen tanks. They prepare for take off by sitting down and fastening their seat belts. Have the children put their knees up and grab their ankles. 10-9-8-7-6-5-4-3-2-1 -Blast off! The spaceship has landed on the moon. The children pretend to get out of the ship to take a moonwalk. Gravity’s force is weaker on the moon, so it’s harder to walk.
Have the children each find a partner to walk with on the moon. Have them jump, walk, and give each other a moon hug. Ask them what they see on the moon plants, animals, aliens? Have them eat their lunches from tubes. Then have them walk back to the spaceship to return to Earth. 1 ~9-8-7-6-5-4-3-2-1 –Blast off. The space ship slows down, as gravity finally pulls the ship in closer and close to Earth.
Hang rocket ship in one corner of your area, with two chairs inside for the astronauts and equipment.
Place ground control panels on either side of an easel, with chairs and equipment available for those children to use to “communicate” with the rocket.
One Little Astronaut…
Hold onto the end of a long piece of hose or rope. Have one child hold onto the other end and pretend to explore space while you recite the poem below. When you finish the first verse, have a second child join the first. Continue with additional verses until all of the children are holding onto the hose. One little astronaut floating out from base, Hooked to a hose, exploring space. He/She thought it was such an amazing trick, He/She called another astronaut to join her quick.
Create a moon landscape for the children by placing pillows all over the floor. Cover the floor with white or yellow sheets. Attach sponges to the children’s feet with rubber bands for space shoes. Play eerie and dramatic music as the children walk across the moon landscape.
Floating in Space…
Make space suits for the children by wrapping their arms, legs and bodies in aluminum foil and taping the foil in place with masking tape. Attach sponges to the children’s feet with rubber bands to make space shoes. Play appropriate music and let the children pretend to float and move around in space.
At music and movement time, let the kids wear their helmets, sit in a circle, and explain that everyone is going on a spaceship trip to other planets. Countdown, blast off, and pretend to travel through space until you spot a planet. Announce that this is a “crawling only” planet, and as you begin to play some music, the kids can crawl around the area until the music stops. At that time, everyone hops back into the circle to blast off and travel to the next planet (a hopping only) planet and so on to as many planets as you have time for before returning to earth.
Trip to the Moon…
Cut square face holes out of the sides of paper bags. Let the children decorate the bags with crayons to make space helmets. Then have them put on their helmets and blast off for an imaginary trip to the moon. On the way, have them float around in their space capsule. When they land on the moon, have the children leap and float in slow motion, as they pretend to plant a flag, collect moon rocks and take pictures of their surroundings. Then let them make the return journey back to earth.
Hot Sun Game…
In this game the children circle around the ‘hot sun.” Pick one child to be the sun. The others form a circle with the sun in the center. While the music plays, the children move in a circle around the hot sun When the music stops, the child who is standing in front of the sun moves to the center and is the hot sun for the next round.
Rocket Flannel Board Numbers 1-10…
(Printable Pattern )
You will need cut from felt:
Large blue circle
10 rocket ships, numbered 1-10
Large yellow circle
Pretend the felt board is outer space. Place the moon on the top part and place the 10 rocket ships around the board. Ask a child to come to the board and find rocket ship number 1, take it off the board, fly it around the room and land it back on the moon. Next have a child find rocket ship number 2 and so on. When all the rockets are on the moon place the Earth on the board. “Blast” the rockets off the moon and have them fly (or throw them) to different children. When all the rockets are with children call out for rocket number 1 to “fly back to earth”. Continue until all the rockets have landed safely at home!
(Music, Music, Music)
Twinkle, twinkle, little stars
Friends of Jupiter and Mars.
All you do the whole night through
Is twinkle, twinkle, twinkle,
Rockets keep flying higher
Keep flying further, further every day,
And need the stars to chart their way,
So while you watch the ships go by,
Keep on lighting up the sky,
Keep on shining through the night
And twinkle, twinkle, twinkle.
Four Little Stars…
Four little stars, Winking at me:
One shop off, Then there were three.
Three little stars, With nothing to do:
One shot off, Then there were two.
Tow little stars, Afraid of the sun:
One shot off, Then there was one.
One little star, Not having any fun:
It shot off, Then there were none.
We’re Going on a Space Trip…
(We’re Going on a Bear Hunt)
After the “mission commander” (teacher) chants a line, the flight crew (students) repeats it and the Motions associated with it.
We’re gong on a space trip (salute)
Pack your flight bag (put items in a bag and zip it up)
Get on your spacesuit (get dressed)
Let’s climb on board (climb steps”
Buckle your safety strap (fasten belt)
Countdown time! 1 0-9-8-7-6-5-4-3-2-1 –Lift off!
I see the Moon. (Point ahead of you)
Can’t go over it (point above you)
Count go under it (point below you)
Have to go around it
Continue the chant with some obstacles in your way. Sun, planet, asteroid, meteor, comet… Complete the chant by pantomiming, ” Our Mission is completed (clap) Time to turn back. I see the comet. I see the meteor.”
(If You’re Happy and You Know It)
Outer space is where I really like to go,
I ride inside a spaceship, don’t you know?
I like to travel near the stars,
Wave to Jupiter and Mars.
Outer space is where I really like to go.
Four Little Stars…
Four little stars
winking at me.
One shot off,
Then there were three!
Three little stars
With nothing to do.
One shot off,
Then there were two!
Two little stars
Afraid of the sun.
One shot off,
Then there was one!
One little star
Alone is no fun.
It shot off,
Then there was none!
Traveling in Space…
I wish I could ride in a spaceship,
It’s just what I’d like to do.
I’d travel to Mars and them Neptune–
Would you like to come along too?
(Point to other person)
Ring Around the Spaceship…
Ring around the spaceship,(walk with others in circle)
Try to grab a star (reach up high)
Stardust, stardust, (wiggle fingers)
All fail down. (Drop to floor)
A Little Rocket…
I’m a little rocket and I’m glad,
Soon I’ll blast off from my pad.
(Crouch down near floor)
When I get all fired up, hear me roar,
Up, up, up I go watch me soar.
Jump up and pretend to soar)
There’s a Tiny Little Star…
Astronauts Round the Moon…
(The bear went over the mountain)
Astronauts went round the moon,
Astronauts went round the moon,
Astronauts went round the moon,
And what do you think they saw?
And that is what they saw.
We’ll Be Orbiting Round The Moon…
Materials: Medium sized paper grocery bag, tape, crayons or markers, glue and scissors. Cut off the top of the bag, so when the bag is on your head it will just cover your ears. Cut down part way on one end to form a bill on your forehead. Reinforce it with tape. Draw, color and cut out emblems to glue on the sides of the space helmet. Ideas would be American Flag, space ship, and the letters U S A. or cut a square face hole out of one side of a paper bag. Let the children decorate the bags with crayons or markers to make space helmets.
Use the bubble wrap that comes in packages and covered it with plaster of Paris. Let dry and peel off. Wouldn’t this look like moon craters or such? Then they let the children paint it.
Cut various shapes out of colored paper. Give children a piece of construction paper to glue their shapes on to make a robot of some sort. Allow them to use markers to finish off their robots.
Set out Styrofoam packing pieces and toothpicks and paint. Let the children stick the Styrofoam pieces.
Collect cardboard toilet tissue holders and 3 oz. paper cups. The children can glue or tape the cup onto the top of the tissue holder to create a rocket. Let the children paint it, or draw on it with felt tip markers. They may add a door, windows, and ladders.
Using newsprint cut two patterns out (Fairly Large) stuffed with newspaper and then painted them. Then hang them around the room.
Have the children cut different sized star shapes out of the white poster board. Use glow in the dark crayons to color both sides of the stars. Use a pin to make small holes in the stars and thread a piece of clear fishing line through the hole to make a hanger for the stars. Hang stars from the ceiling. With the rest of the stars.
Outer Space Paintings…
Draw a moon, planets and stars on large pieces of white paper with a white crayon for each child ahead of time. Have the children paint the paper with a thin layer of blue or black thinned tempera paint. The children will enjoy the outer space surprises.
Give children a large piece of white paper. Demonstrate to the children that if you trace the shape of a scissors, it will make a rocket ship. Encourage the children to trace the scissors for a rocket and use bottle caps and circular jar lids for planets and moons. Have paints available for the children to paint their very own space creation.
Give of the children a sturdy foam paper plate to work with. Glue on dried beans & other assorted things to provide texture for the moon surface. When it dries cover with aluminum foil & tuck the edges over so it doesn’t come unwrapped. Then press down gently. This will reveal craters and fissures, etc. on the moon’s surface. Purchase some toothpick flags to stick on the moon’s surface.
Have children trace different circular shapes for planets and moons on a large piece of paper. Have the children use Eye Droppers to drop mixtures of food coloring and water on their planets. Strong concentrations work best. Marble painting or watercolors will also give this activity variety.
2 1/2 c. Boiling water 2 c. salt 4 c. flour
Add salt to water, then stir into flour. Have the children knead the dough until it is a good consistency for shaping. Let them roll the dough out and use cookie cutters to cut out star and circle shapes. Each child should have a couple of stars and a couple of circles. Don’t forget to put a hole at the top of each shape for hanging. Bake shapes in the oven at 250 degrees for 2 -3 hours, checking frequently after 2 two hours. Paint them another day.
Using 2 liter pop bottles- upside down. 2 for each child (which the parents sent in. ) I duct taped them together, then made 2 small holes in the bottles, one hole on the top and one on the bottom, Then I put a piece of rope (not very thick) – through the holes (make one of the holes large enough to fish the rope out of) the kids could actually stick their arms through the rope like putting on a jacket. They were very cute. Then we made helmets by using white paper cut in a -helmet shape? LOL a rectangle that is rounded at the top. I cut out a square place for their faces to show through and they put plastic wrap over the hole and we taped it to the back of the paper. Their faces were sort of framed within the hole. They decorated their masks with lots of colors and of course stars…..and off they went to the moon.
Books on Amazon:
Items may include: hoses, helmets, moon boots, white clothing for their space suits, gloves, cereal box jet packs or large cardboard tubes taped together as air tanks, with thin rope looped through each tank as shoulder straps, Martian hats, milk jug helmets, NASA Ground Control panel: Large sheet of paper-draw on controls or use milk jug caps, orange juice caps, etc., old microphone and earphones. Meteors can be balls of aluminum foil wrapped around long strips of plastic. Tie foil fringes on to end to play meteor catch. Large box for a space ship. Remember to make paper mache planets to hang around the room as well as glittered cardboard stars to hang. Once these are made, they can be used year after year. Microphones can be made by covering toilet paper tubes with tinfoil. Also telescopes may be made with this same method of covering tissue paper holders. Poke small holes in the end of the foil so the children can see the light when they look at the light through their telescopes.
Cut out five to ten star shapes out of tag board. Number the top half with numbers one thru ten and the bottom half with corresponding dots to the number. Laminate and cut apart have the children match accordingly.
On a piece of tag board space the numbers one through ten about two inches apart. Then cut thirty stars out of tag board and laminate. Have the children match the correct number of stars to the number board.
Sun and Moon Dough Art…
Materials: Flour, salt, oil, cream of tartar, water, yellow and blue food coloring, mixing bowl, teaspoons, tablespoons, saucepan, stove.
Activity: Make playdough by combining the following items in a mixing bowl: 2 cups of flour, 1 cup of salt, 2 tablespoons oil, 4 teaspoons cream of tartar, 2 cups water. Divide this mixture into two bowls. Add four drops of yellow food coloring for the sun mixture and four drops of blue food coloring for the moon mixture. The consistency should be runny, so put the mixture in a saucepan and cook it on a stove or hot plate until it forms a ball. When it’s cool, have the children make a large sun and a large moon. They can make moon craters with thumb imprints. Then let the playdough harden.
In the bottom of a dish pan pour in equal parts of cornstarch and water. Add food coloring, if desired. Mix the cornstarch and water together to make moon mud. Let one child at a time put his or her hands
Moon Sand / Cloud Dough…
Some people call it moon sand and others call it cloud dough. It really doesn’t matter what you call it, JUST MAKE IT. Recipe HERE.
Cut 4 or 5 holes of different sizes in top of a shoebox. Set out assorted sized rocks. Have the children sort rocks closest to hole size in box.
Cut out a rocket shape and the numbers one through six. Using a die have the children take turns rolling the die and removing the number rolled. Continue until all the numbers are removed and the rocket can blast off.
Dehydrated Food Snacks…
Peel bananas, slice apples, oranges, or other fruit or vegetables. Put into a dehydrator for the day or overnight depending on the fruit. You may use ziplock bags or shrink wrap from a meat deli. This is a great science activity as well as fun for the children to pretend they are astronauts.
Bread, star-shaped cookie cutters, strawberry jam, orange marmalade, grape jelly Have the children cut the bread into star shapes. You can toast the bread first. Have the children spread jam on their stars. They can choose strawberry jam for a cool star, orange marmalade for an average stars, or grape jelly for the hottest star.
Information on the Colors: Tasty Stars:
Explain to the children that stars are burning hot.
Scientists can tell how hot a star is by its color. The coolest starts are red. Orange, yellow and greenish starts are hotter. White starts are even hotter, and blue stars are the hottest.
Some foods are dehydrated in space by having water added to them at mealtime. For snack, give children small ziplock bags in which you have put one-eighth cup instant pudding and one-fourth cup milk. Be sure the bags are securely closed. Have the children gently knead the mixture until the pudding forms. Snip off a small piece of one of the bottom corners. Encourage the children to squeeze the pudding into their mouths from the bag. The children will love it!
A fun activity that the children LOVE is to taste test real ice cream that the astronauts eat in space. Purchase Astronaut ICE Cream HERE
At snacktime cut cheese into different sized chunks. Then provide the children with pretzel sticks and let them put the chunks together to create “cheese robots.”
Astronaut Roll Ups…
4 McIntosh Apples
4 navel oranges
2 tb. butter
Peel, core and slice apples. Peel and seed oranges. Puree fruit in a
blender or food processor. Lightly butter 15″ x 10″ x 1″ pan. Bake at 200
degrees for 3 hours, with the door slightly ajar. Remove when dry, cut into
12 pieces. Place pieces on waxed paper and roll them up.
At snacktime cut vegetables such as celery, cucumbers and zucchini into different sized chunks. Then provide the children with toothpicks and let them put the chunks together to create “vegetable astronauts.” (Have the children remove the toothpicks before eating their snacks.)together with the toothpicks to create robots.
Ingredients: 2 C. Peanut butter, 1 1/3 C. Honey, 2 C. Raisins, 2 C. Dry milk, 3 1/2 C. Graham cracker crumbs (keep 1/2 c. separate)
Mix dry milk, raisins, and 3 c. graham cracker crumbs. Add honey and peanut butter, mix well (hands do best) Roll into small balls Place remaining 1/2 c. of graham cracker crumbs in a large baggie
Place several balls at a time into the baggie and shake, then place on a Cookie sheet. Chill then eat.