Children are very excited about Space Toys at the moment – the recent Mars mission had us all on the edge of our seats and has reignited an interest in all things out of this world! (For those of you who missed it, Perseverance (a one-tonne NASA rover) landed on Mars on 18/2/21 and transmitted footage of the event back to Earth. Very exciting!)
Space toys are such a wonderful opportunity to engage children’s imagination. All those different planets and stars, the moon, rockets! Learning about space helps children to understand the importance of our own planet and how to look after it.
Children love experiments (as do I!) and learning about space in a hands-on manner is perfect for those kinaesthetic learners. Galt Toys have an excellent range of toys, their Explore and Discover science sets are compatible with the National Curriculum and were also winners of the Progressive Preschool Award for the Best Preschool STEM Range for 2019. I really like their Space Lab - as well as encouraging early STEM learning, your youngsters get to use construction skills and start to link their understanding of different scientific principles.
Enabling children to explore their natural fascination about space allows them the chance to grasp the bigger picture. It also gives them the opportunity to hone a variety of skills – from information processing to art, language, maths – I could go on. Exploring space is fun and something that can really engage your children. Non-fiction books are perfect for dipping into (great for reluctant readers) and working well in tandem with equipment and other tangible resources. Learn about the awesome Galileo and then try out a modern telescope to check out the stars – history in action!
For your early years children, this talking telescope is just brilliant! Although you can’t actually see through it, this doesn’t matter at all for it shows the planets and stars in perfect clarity. Young space fans can use it independently and will soon be reciting more facts than you thought possible!
To encourage independent, open-ended exploration and learning, this powerful, lightweight telescope is the one. Light enough to take on days out, it is ideal for watching wildlife and nature and also for exploring the night sky where care observers can get up close to the Moon, planets in our Solar System and stars beyond.
Although the story of the various Mars rovers starts back in the 1990s with Sojourner, the current Perseverance is something from your own child’s history. Some may remember the heart-breaking moment when Opportunity ‘died’ two years ago after 15 years on the planet. We become invested in the stories of these intrepid vehicles and this beautifully illustrated book about the search for life on Mars is a chance to share the story of Curiosity – Opportunity’s ‘friend’ who is still going strong. You could always build your own little Rover to search for life in the garden!
Understanding where our little planet fits in the solar system really does push home the enormity of space! The NASA Science Solar System Exploration Page has some amazing facts and pictures with up to date news about what’s going on in the ‘great unknown’ (or not so unknown anymore!). Having your own version of the solar system gives a great visual on a topic that can be hard to grasp for some children – this kit allows you to build the planets, paint them with glow effects for night time illumination and hang up to see how each planet compares in size.
by Allie White, educational consultant to BrightMinds.As a parent and former-teacher, Allie has a hands-on approach to home learning, believing that the best learning is done together in a relaxed environment.
Our mission at BrightMinds is to foster “a brighter way to play” to inspire your child to be curious about the world around them & encourage creativity in a fun & relaxed way.
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