The Solar System: Playdough Style

I can’t quite remember how it happened but last weekend Daniel showed Theo a video of our solar system and since then, the boy’s been fascinated by the planets. As it’s Earth Day today, I thought it would be interesting to do a Solar System related activity with Theo. But most ideas on Pinterest seem to cater to older toddlers and children who are already learning science at school. I thought to myself, “There’s no reason not to expose Theo to science just because he’s not quite 3! Science is everywhere!”

Therefore I looked up “solar system birthday cakes” on Pinterest and tadaaaaahhhhh!!! I thought it would be a good idea to break open the playdough I got him last year to recreate his own solar system. 

Initially I wanted to keep it to just Earth because an inner voice told me I should control the mess before it gets out of hand! But Theo said he wanted to make Mars, Venus and the Sun too. Well, if he’s so interested in creating the planets and Sun, it would be a shame to stop him. 

So very soon, Mars was “born”. My inner voice screamed, “Please don’t mix Earth and Mars!!!!” 

Daniel couldn’t resist joining in the fun. That yellow strip is apparently the sun. It has to be massive because it’s a lot bigger than the planets and moons in the solar system. In the period that I was away to attend to Mia, they’ve created Mercury (the blackish grey one) and was creating Venus. 

I wasn’t seeking for perfection. Theo helped blend the different shades of orange together to make Jupiter, the biggest planet in the solar system. He was really good at following instructions. And each time after he’s completed a planet, he would name every single planet that he’s made. 

He did most of the mixing while we helped mould them into spheres (because I’m a control freak!!!). 

Apparently it took about 500 million years for all the planets to be more or less what they are like today. It took us a bit more than an hour using Playdough. 


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