Kids Crafts: Solar System - Red Ted Art's Blog : Red Ted Art's Blog

Kids Crafts: Solar System

| April 25, 2012 | 51 Comments

paper mache craftsWelcome back to this week’s Kids Crafts – our very own paper mache Solar System – ok, so it is “only” the sun, the earth and the moon, but it is a start and something to add to over time. We actually made it , mainly because the lovely people from Cubbykit sent it to us to make (more about them at the end)! It has taken as a while to “get round” to doing it – basically the Easter holidays – I think any paper mache craft is perfect for the holidays – you have much more time actually craft, more time to let things dry and then paint.. as well as some time to enjoy it!

Red Ted really enjoyed making these – he was fascinated about talking about the sun, the earth and the moon – and how they are all different sizes and colours. We talk about how the sun is a big fire ball and that most probably no one lives there. When we made the earth, it was very important for Red Ted to get Great Britain “right” – more specifically London… and he loved painting a boot for Italy! We decided that there may be some aliens on the moon. Largely due to our handprint aliens we made last week! It was also a great opportunity to explore colour theory: yellow and red make orange for the fire sun, yellow and blue make green… for the earth.

Materials: old newspaper (or white packing paper), paper mache paste (or try homemade paper mache), 3 balloons, string for drying, paint (or a fab Cubbykit  pack)

  1) Blow up your balloons in 3 different sizes. 2) Tear you paper into strips and pieces. Personally, I find it help to not the pieces around 2-3cm wider and 10 cm long. It really doesn’t matter too much though, I just find it easier to handle. Especially for the smaller hands!

paper mache craft ideas

3) Dip your paper in the mache and apply to the balloon. Add 2-4 layers of paper! The balloon will feel quite heavy and probably be rolling around lots!

paper mache craft ideas

4) Hand up to dry. If you are drying these indoors, it is helpful NOT to put them near a radiator! The balloon *could* pop before the mache is dry, leaving you with a mis-shapen call. Drying slowly is good!

paper mache solar system

5) Once dry – either leave the balloon inside – so you have something to hold whilst painting… or pop it… your choice. I think keeping it in and popping afterwards is easier. Paint a firey sun, a blue and green earth and a white moon. It was easier for red ted to paint the whole earth blue and then add the green on top. Needless to say, it would look better/ neater of you were able to paint the green directly on. But I don’t think it matters too much. And it didn’t bother Red Ted. We got our atlas and globe out and really enjoyed looking at it and discussing it, whilst Red Ted painted! We even left some white parts for North and South Poles! For the moon we just added black circles for the craters (Alien houses). When we did remove the balloon – Red Ted was FASCINATED! Especially that our paper mache creations would stay for ever and ever and not shrivel up like balloons do! Oh to experience things for the first time!

solar system crafts

6) Dry.. and then hang! Red Ted wants me to hang these up above his bed, which I will.. maybe we can add the other planets over time! Enjoy! And talk lots of space and solar systems!

Now to Cubbykit – I confess – I am not much of a “kit person” myself – but then I am a crafty so and so and I have tons of craft materials stashed away in my house! So much so, that I am in desperate need of a crafty supply declutter! However, kits are great for those of us who either have less time or less space or just need a helping hand/ motivation to get crafty with their kids. The Cubbykit is a great concept – once a month, they send you a box with 3 craft ideas along a theme – we had “Space” – and got to explore rockets and stars and of course our craft above. The activities are a nice variety and have appeal on different levels. Everything you need to make is contained within the box, plus a little extra. The materials are of good quality too and each craft comes with excellent and wonderfully printed instructions. These really would make a great gift to a niece/ nephew, godchild or grandchild or just to a child who wants to get crafty regularly but needs a lending hand! I was under no obligation to write about them and it was left to me to do so -so this really is my opinion and Cubbykit kindly let me show the craft step by step above. *Thank you*.

paper mache activities

Join the Kids Get Crafty linky party! Each week Creative with Kids and Red Ted Art host this kids craft linky, bringing you more readers and more ideas to browse! Disclaimer: by joining the Kids Get Crafty linky – you give us permission to highlight any projects on Red Ted Art and Creative with Kids or share your craft ideas on Pintrest – we will always link to your site! If you have been crafty with your kid’s be it at home, in the kitchen or outdoors, please link up!

What have you made from  paper mache? And what are your favourite Solar System Crafts?

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Category: Kids Craft, Paper Crafts, paper mache, Recycling

Comments (51)

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  1. Hi there! I just love seeing your post! Funny my son and I just tackled paper-mache ourselves. Your idea of hanging the balloons up to dry is brilliant. I on the other hand periodically had to turn the paper-mached balloons that were drying on the heater…and of course I had to unstick them. You’ve inspired me to want to expand on my planet collection! And maybe add a certain star too:) LOVE IT. Looks like “Red Ted” had fun!

  2. Pinkoddy says:

    What a brilliant idea. I saw the glittery Earth linked up yesterday but wow a whole solar system.
    Thanks for hosting again.

  3. The planets look fabulous! When i go back to teach, I will making them for my classroom! x

  4. Sian says:

    How lovely : ) especially like the earth!

  5. Red Ted Art says:

    Thank you everyone. We had a lovely time making them. Was great to see how interested Red Ted was and how he liked discussing everything!!

  6. sunnymama says:

    What a great idea! They look fabulous. :)

  7. lisa says:

    Ah! I have literally just posted our planet Earth for Earth day – ours is flat though as Big wanted something to put on the wall. I love these! really great! I have balloon craft jinx though, mine never works, we tried yarn eggs for Easter and it all went horribly glue -ily wrong….. fantastic make! Big does want to make the other planets now…

  8. Gina says:

    The solar system looks great! It’s funny…we just started a paper mache project last night. I wasn’t sure if my son would want to touch the paste, but he loved it! The paint is a great touch to finish off your solor system. What a lovely project!

  9. lyndsay says:

    Love it! We just made the standard styro ball solar system: the paper mache is stunning.

  10. Red Ted Art says:

    @Sunnydaymama – thank you :-)

    @Lis – a but yours displays nicely on the wall, I bet it looks great! And I haven’t had much success with yarn balls either!! I think it depends on the wool!

    @Gina – they didn’t seem to mind the paste (I think it feels quite nice!)

    @lyndsay – oooh like styro balls for the solar system too! (At least you can make it smaller!!!)

  11. oooh fab idea Maggy. Z would love your solar system.

    Cubby kit sounds like a great idea too. xx

  12. Tracy Dixon says:

    Love your solar system! We have a cubby kit too and are gradually working our way through it.Such a brilliant idea.

    Our papier mache ended up being toadstools instead of planets, but I guess that’s the fun of crafting.. you go wherever it takes you!

  13. Red Ted Art says:

    Exactly Tracy!! And sounds like you recovered well from a potential “craft fail”!!!

  14. Rachel says:

    Oooooh, lovely solar system! Red Ted did such a great job painting them!

  15. Didi says:

    Your solar system came out great! They did such a good job. :) I made a solar system snack once. I cut all sorts of fruit into little circles. I used an orange slice for the sun, and bits if strawberry for the rings of Saturn.

  16. Zoe says:

    Looks fun! We made a to-scale solar system in our garden last year

  17. My daughter loves everything to do with space, so this would be great for her!

  18. this is where we differ – you see easter holidays and think paper miache and I just go to Tesco’s and buy more wine…..

  19. Deebi27 says:

    I love this idea (our yarn balloons failed badly also. Before I start this in the classroom, better see if they could be hung up (fire hazard or something…we do have a sprinkler system in the classroom! Thanks!

  20. James says:

    WOW – such a good/fun idea to get them interested in the solar system. Fun and educational – pitty the school teachers do not have the creativity to come up with tasks like this!

  21. Thanks for your lovely comment on our tin can puppets over at Adventures at Home. I’ve linked them here now – and loved seeing how your solar system worked out. I’ve tried papier-mache with my two kids before – it was a puffer fish we were endeavouring to make, as I recall – it never got finished. (My little boy has a bit of an issue with getting sticky hands). Maybe we’ll try again now he’s a bit older…

    • Red Ted Art says:

      Ah yes, some kids don’t like messy hands at all! I can understand that. Always worth another try again later, the kids are changing all the time!

  22. Thanks for joining in the rainy day activities linky, I’ve never been ambitious enough to try paper mache but this sounds quite easy so might have to give it a go.

  23. Caz says:

    What a fabulous solar system, my 5 year old would adore something like that! Great job.

  24. Red Ted Art says:

    @Ramblings OF A Surburban Mummy – go on… you know you want to!!! :-)

    @Caz thank you! I can see us adding to it over time!

  25. Liz Hallberg says:

    We have not tackled paper mache yet over here, but this makes me very excited to do so!! Thanks for sharing :)

  26. Carla says:

    It looks like you guys had an awesome time making that solar system! I love paper mache! Thanks for the invitation to link up the other day…I just added a post to the linky!

  27. Wow, I _love_ these! I especially like the sun. I’ve been a little nervous about trying paper mache with the Little People, but the thought of these in our classroom definitely makes me want to try it.

  28. Red Ted Art says:

    @Carla – great to have you visit!

    @Julie doooo have a go, I bet you will have fun!

  29. Jodi says:

    This planet idea is amazing. Great work.

  30. They look great Maggy. i must get the paper mache out again!

    Thanks for linking to Fun sparks xx

  31. Brittany says:

    I love it! My son is obsessed with all things outer space!Thanks for sharing AND for hosting! Wishing you a lovely Mother’s Day weekend!

  32. neko says:


    Love the ideas. Thanks for sharing. I am always looking for way to get children interested in learning about the solar system.

    Just want to share what I am doing with my first grade students.

    Cheers- Neko

    this is a link to my blog. Let me know what you think. My students love the feedback.

  33. paige says:

    very useful for my school project thank you !!!! :) :) :)

  34. WEEE Watford says:

    Now I am going to do my breakfast, afterward hhaving
    my breakfadt comiing yet again to read other news.

  35. Nora says:

    Hi, what kind of paint would be best for this project? I have water color tempera poster paint. Thank you!

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