While most preschool students will not understand the in-depth details of objects in space, such as how far away they are, they can still appreciate the beauty of the sun, moon, stars and planets. Crafts help preschool students learn about space on a basic level and begin to appreciate the objects that can be found in space.
Star and Moon Crafts
Common household items such as paper plates and aluminium foil are ideal for star and moon crafts. Teach children about the eight phases of the moon by cutting paper plates to represent those phases and allowing children to colour them. Cut a crescent-shaped moon out of a paper plate and glue it onto a piece of black construction paper along with stars cut out of aluminium foil. Paint the stars and moon with glow-in-the-dark paint so the picture can shine during the day or at night. Cut star and moon shapes from card stock, punch a hole in the top of each, string yarn through them, and tie the yarn onto a hanger for an easy mobile.
Using foam balls of varying sizes, children are able to make their own planets. Use craft paint and have children decorate the balls to create models of existing planets or design and name their own planet. Stick a paper clip in the top of the ball and tie a piece of string to it so the planet can be displayed from the ceiling. Planets can also be created using modelling clay or by cutting out two round circles of paper, decorating them, then stuffing them with tissue paper and stapling them shut.
Spaceship and Astronaut Crafts
Astronauts and spaceships are fascinating to preschool students. Make every preschooler an astronaut by printing pictures of astronauts and cutting out a hole in the face of the helmet. Glue a picture of a student's face so that it shows through the hole. Create a spaceship by covering an empty toilet paper tube with aluminium foil. Glue a cone-shaped paper cup to the top of the toilet paper tube and tape red tissue paper to the bottom of the tube to represent flames. Allow children to name their spaceships and decorate them with stickers, paint and glitter.
Turn learning about outer space into a fun snack. Use star-shaped cookie cutters to make star sandwiches. Create astronaut pudding by placing 1/8 cup pudding mix and 1/4 cup milk in a plastic sandwich bag. Have children knead the bag until the pudding forms and then eat the pudding by snipping off a corner of the bag to represent how astronauts eat meals in a bag. Using watered-down food colouring, clean paintbrushes, and various sizes of marshmallows, allow children to paint edible planets. Food colouring mixed with milk can be used to decorate pancakes with the sun, moon or planets.