Free watercolor solar system planets to make a DIY cardboard science project craft illustrating to preschoolers and kindergartners how planets orbit the sun.
Happy Birthday, Nicolaus Copernicus! His hypothesis that the earth is not the center of the universe around which everything revolves caused a collapse of scientific dogma. And, I am celebrating today with this super fun Solar System Cardboard DIY you can make at home from recycled materials. Besides, you can bring experiential learning to life and show little scientists how planets revolve around the Sun and not the other way around. So, grab your free watercolor solar system planets and turn conceptual learning into hands-on learning by doing, which is at the core of Montessori philosophy.
Materials for Solar System Cardboard DIY:
- 8 pieces of cardboard
- cardboard base
- geometric compass (to trace circles)
- black and white paint
- bio glitter (optional)
- a chalk marker (for drawing orbits)
- a wooden skewer
- hot glue gun
- a glue stick
- pony beads
- ✄ planets and the sun cutouts (download a freebie below)
First, gather eight cardboard pieces. (I used round pizza inserts for the three larger ones, so I did not need to cut those pieces in a round shape.)
If you are using regular-sized cardboard, trace circles using a geometric compass. Then, cut them out and paint them black on one side. Each circle should be progressively smaller by about half an inch.
Optional: Arrange the cutouts one over the other progressively, and using a toothbrush, sprinkle a little bit of white paint. You can finish it with a dab of bio glitter over the wet paint to give it a galaxy effect.
The next step is to assemble them one on top of each other and perforate a hole in the middle. (I used a geometric compass for that.)
Then, hot glue a wooden skewer perpendicular to a base (I am using another cardboard piece). The next step would be to thread the cardboard on a skewer, threading a pony bead in between each. Lastly, glue a toothpick to the planets and arrange them according to their orbits.
Watch a video tutorial below for full instructions.
Solar System Cardboard DIY
Nicolaus Copernicus (1473–1543) was born on Feb 19, 1473, in Poland. He was a Renaissance mathematician and an astronomer who formulated a model of the universe that placed the Sun rather than the Earth at its center. Such a model revolutionized how we then viewed the world by constructing the heliocentric theory of Earth’s relation to the Sun. This heliocentric theory replaced the Ptolemaic geocentric theory, which held that the Sun and other planets revolve around Earth. So, Copernicus proposed that the planets revolved around the Sun when most people believed that Earth was the center of the universe. Although his model wasn’t entirely correct, it formed a strong foundation for future scientists, such as Galileo, to build on and improve humanity’s understanding of the motion of heavenly bodies.
How do you celebrate his birthday? Have you ever made a DIY cardboard solar system? Leave a comment if you did!
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