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Rocket Trip to the Moon
Help the children construct rocket ships out of recycled materials. First, show pictures of space rockets and capsules to the children by looking at books together. Then each child can make their own rocket by using cardboard toilet tubes. Invite the preschoolers to paint the tubes in bright colors and draw any details they wish with markers and crayons. To make the nose cone, draw a circle on construction paper and then cut this in half. Roll the semi-circle into a cone (the straight side up which will make a point) and secure the cone with tape. Finally, glue the cone to one end of the rocket tube.
Another preschool space activity is dramatic play when children pretend to blast off into space with an action rhyme. Have the children stand with their arms overhead and fingers touching to form a rocket cone. Say this rhyme together:
Inside a rocket ship,
Just enough room.
Here comes the countdown:
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More Preschool Space Activities
Help preschool children make moonburst paintings by dropping spoonfuls of thinned white and blue paint onto black construction paper. Invite each child to blow the paint into designs using straws. Teach them to blow out by practicing with their mouth on one end of the straw and their hand near the other end. Ask the children if they can feel the air on their hand when they blow out. Challenge the children to blow at different angles to make moonburst designs and finish this space activity by sprinkling salt on the wet paint for a sparkling effect when it dries.
Do the Moon Jump
Children can pretend they are astronauts jumping on the moon's surface with this activity and learn a preschool math lesson by measuring using moon jumps. Measure out a six-foot line on the floor with masking tape. This shows the length of a step an astronaut takes on the moon. Invite the children to see how many giant steps she needs to take here on Earth to equal one step on the moon. Challenge your group to measure the distance across the room or yard in moon jumps.
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Roaring Rockets by Ant Parker [Kingfisher, 2000]
There's No Place Like Space: All About our Solar System by Tish Rabe [Random House, 1999]
I Want to Be an Astronaut by Byron Barton [HarperCollins, 1992]
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Hands-On-Science by Jeannine Perez [First Teacher Press, 1991]