Grade: Elementary
Subject: Science

#921. Let's go to the stars!

Science, level: Elementary
Posted Sat Mar 27 21:37:26 PST 1999 by Mary Lou Mejeur (
Morral Elementary, Morral, Ohio USA
Materials Required: Glow-in-the-dark stars and planets
Activity Time: 15-20 minutes
Concepts Taught: To conclude unit on space

In our building, we have a room under the stage which can become pitch black when the door is shut. Ahead of time, I put up glow-in-the-dark stars and planets on one wall. I leave the light on and later bring my kindergarteners "to see the stars". We had previously talked about the sun as a star, where the stars are in the daytime, simple constellations, the order of planets and much more. When they enter the room, the sun (light) is shining. Can you see the stars clearly? Review what was taught about stars.
Then close the door and turn the "sun" off to make it night.
The "oohs" and "ahhs" are delightful. Why can't you see the planets as clearly? (planets do not give off their own light). Can you find the Little and Big Dipper? Are the stars all the same size? Make it become "day" again and notice how the stars can not be seen as during the night.
The children enjoy this so much that we usually have to make another trip to the stars later.