Go stargazing in the classroom with this hands-on project.
Students will learn about the major constellations by recreating them in this hands-on activity.
Elmer’s Black-on-Black or Blue Foam Board*, Elmer's Washable School Glue Stick*, Elmer's Glitter Glue*, ruler, graph paper, white paper, scissors, and pencils
SET UP AND PREPARE
1. Give each student a piece of Elmer's Black-on-Black or Blue Foam Board, a ruler, graph paper, white paper, scissors, a pencil, and glue materials.
2. As a class, research some of the major constellations on the Internet. Read about the history behind each constellation and put images of each one up on a projector or whiteboard. Some good examples to use are: Ursa Major (Big Dipper), Ursa Minor (Little Dipper), Taurus (the bull), Orion (the giant), Draco (dragon), Cepheus (king), and Camelopardus (giraffe).
3. After students have learned the stories behind the chosen constellations, have them use a pencil, a ruler, and graph paper to sketch the constellations. Encourage them to plot the stars and create connecting lines between each one. As a class, compare and contrast the constellations’ shape, complexity, and distance between stars.
1. To begin the project, have students cut small, medium, and large star shapes out of white paper. They can decorate the stars using Elmer’s Glitter Glue.
2. Next, instruct students to sketch the constellations on the Black-on-Black or Blue Foam Board, based on their graph-paper sketches.
3. Then, students can use Elmer’s Washable School Glue Stick to glue the stars to the foam board in their proper places.
4. Students can connect the stars and label each constellation using Elmer’s Glitter Glue.
5. To finish, encourage students to make their own constellations and write imaginative stories about them. Suggest they make a constellation after their namesake, a special interest, or a character in a story they’ve written. They can add their constellations to the foam board.
6. Hang the constellations on the walls of your classroom to make your own night sky.
*Elmer's®, Elmer's® School Glue Stick, and Elmer's® Glitter Glue are all registered trademarks of Elmer's® Products, Inc.