Whether your child is fascinated about everything space-related or she is learning about space science in school, teach your child about famous U.S. astronauts. Start with Neil Armstrong, the first man to set foot on the moon. Use age-appropriate activities to teach your child about his historic accomplishments.
Read books with your child that teach her about who Neil Armstrong was. For kids ages 4 and older, "Neil Armstrong," by Thomas Streissguth, provides a basic introduction to Neil Armstrong's life and his first steps on the moon. For kids 8 and older, "Who is Neil Armstrong?" by Roberta Edwards, provides a more detailed look at the life of Neil Armstrong, from his years as a Boy Scout to how he became an astronaut and the one chosen for the Apollo moon mission.
Work on spaceship and moon-themed crafts to represent Armstrong's accomplishments as an astronaut. To make a spaceship out of toilet paper, have your child paint a toilet paper tube white. Cut out a white circle and make a slit in it to make a cone shape for the front of the shape. Glue the cone to the top of the toilet paper tube using nontoxic school glue. Cut out two triangle shapes to glue to either side of the toilet paper tube at the bottom. Have your child paint "USA" on the toilet paper tube in red and blue paint to complete the spaceship. To make a moonscape collage, draw a half moon shape on a piece of black construction paper. Have your child sponge-paint in the moon using grayish paint, then sprinkle in crafts sand to add more texture. Your child can add a flag out of construction paper and a smiling astronaut standing on the moon.
Come up with games for your child and her friends related to Armstrong's landing on the moon. For one game, have one child pretend to be Armstrong and the rest of the kids are moon rocks that he is trying to collect. If he is able to tag a "rock," it must go to a designated "collection" area. The game is over when all the rocks of have been collected. For another game, you could hide a U.S. flag. Whoever finds it and can plant it in a designated spot is the winner and is declared Neil Armstrong.
Take your child to the nearest science museum that features space exhibits. Most science museums feature exhibits on outer space and the moon. Some even have original space equipments, such as the Air and Space Museum (airandspace.si.edu) in Washington, D.C., and the Californian Science Center (californiasciencecenter.org) in Los Angeles. You can also take your child to a planetarium, which features various shows about space and astronomy. Many include a show focused on the moon, too.
- Neil Armstrong;Thomas Streissguth
- Who is Neil Armstrong; Roberta Edwards
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