Creating the Solar System – School Project

On the last day of the Autumn Term in school, my youngest came out with a little slip of paper telling us all about the holiday homework. The youngest is in  Reception at school and the subject he will be learning about in the new term will be Space. So his homework is to produce a 3D object to do with space ie; an astronaut or a Rocket.

Living so close to London meant that we could board the underground and take a trip to the Science Museum. We had a day planned just before Christmas to visit Santa at Westfield ,White City, so we decided to extend our day out to visit the museum.

We had a lovely day at the museum and saw lots of interesting things but there wasn’t much for what we was looking for. We was hoping to see a model of the solar system and what planets are that make it up. But we didn’t find much, unfortunately. It was mostly about how we explore space but not what makes it up, so there were plenty of astronaut suits and rockets to look at. We did find a little display on the planets

Oliver wanted to make the Solar System, so after looking in the museum and on the internet at what the planets looked like and there names, he was ready to start making his project.

We bought some polystyrene balls in Hobbycraft, all different sizes, so these will represent the planets.

We found an unwanted box to present the solar system in and painted it black. We used blackboard paint as this worked far better than childrens paint

DSC_3232_optOliver painted all of the inside of the box, we left it to one side to dry. It dried pretty quickly as it was blackboard paint, it also gives it a matt look rather than a glossy one.

Whilst we waited for the box to dry, we researched the planets; their colours, size and where they were in the solar system. With our information at hand we was ready to paint the balls and make them into planets.

DSC_3226_optWe found that sticking a tooth pick in to the ball made it easier to hold onto and paint them. Once they were painted, we placed the other end of the tooth pick into some playdough for them to dry.


To make Saturn, I drew out a hoop onto a piece of card and Oliver cut it out

DSC_3227_optWe then pushed the ball through the hoop into place and then painted it

DSC_3228_optI had to mix up the colours for Oliver to paint the balls, but he is very good at following instructions and managed to paint them with no trouble.

Once all of the planets and box was dry, it was time to put it all together and create the Solar System. We had bought some glow in the dark stars in the sale from Debenhams and thought they would be perfect to add to the project. Oliver began sticking them in the box

DSC_3254 - Copy_opt

Using some black wire and strong super glue (only for adults) we attached the planets to the box. Oliver needed help with this as he couldn’t make the holes in the box and use the super glue. So using some wire cutters I cut the wire into different lengths. I stuck one end into the polystyrene planet ball using some glue and padding it out with blu tack. I pierced some holes at equal distances along the top of the box and then Oliver poked through the wire, to the outer box. We secured it on the outside with some sellotape.

DSC_3256 - Copy_opt


DSC_3258 - Copy_optThe project took just over a day to make and Oliver is so proud of what he has produced. Yes he had a little help from Mummy. I had to guide him in what to do and mix up the colours and stick the wire in the balls but he done the bulk of it. He now knows the planets that are in the solar system by looking at them and from the colours.

Thank you for stopping by and reading 🙂