Arts and Crafts, Science
Galaxy in a Jar - Space Science Project for Kids - 7 Days of Play

Galaxy in a Jar – Space Science Project for Kids

galaxy jar activity for kids space study

This galaxy in a jar is a fun DIY craft to get kids excited about space exploration. Best part for grown ups? The set-up is so simple! Read on to find out the fun steps to recreate your own vibrant galaxy!

A Galaxy in a Jar for the Space Fan!

This galaxy in a jar is a fun, hands on way, to craft and learn all about space. It is a great opporuntity to discuss the differences between the solar system, galaxies, and the universe.  Look at pictures of the milky way as well as other known galaxies in the universe to decide what color paint you’d like to use to create your own galaxy in a jar!

All activities should be supervised by an adult. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases. This post may contain affiliate links.

Skills: 

Ages: 

Prep Time: 

Kid-Made Galaxy in a Jar

 

In this video, you’ll see that kids can work independently when making this galaxy in a jar craft. The simple step-by-step instructions are below and can be easily communicated or read by the child before they dig into making their project all by themselves! Not pictured, but right beside my 4 year old in this video, was my 2 year old who was following the directions independently as well!

For more arts and crafts activities, be sure to check out our comprehensive list of ideas!

Kid-Made Galaxy in a Jar

In this video, you’ll see that kids can work independently when making this galaxy in a jar craft. The simple step-by-step instructions are below and can be easily communicated or read by the child before they dig into making their project all by themselves! Not pictured, but right beside my 4 year old in this video, was my 2 year old who was following the directions independently as well!

For more arts and crafts activities, be sure to check out our comprehensive list of ideas!

galaxy jar activity for kids space study

Tips for Creating Your Own Galaxy in a Jar

Washable Paint. This activity can get a bit messy depending on the child, so be sure to use washable, aka tempera, paint. For a full list of arts and crafts supplies, we have a reallly great and thorough checklist! Some tempera paint can be thick, while some can be thin. If you have thick paint like us, you may want to mix it in the water before pouring directly in the jar as we did in the video.

Lots of Cotton Balls. Don’t be shy with how many cotton balls you need! To create two jars, we used a full bag of jumbo cotton balls with a 200 piece count!

Glitter. We want to do our part in reducing micro-plastics into the environment, so we always opt to use biodegradable glitter.

Materials

Step-by-Step Instructions 

Step 1

If you’d like to use 3 colors, fill the jar 1/3 of the way up with water. If you’d like more layers of colors, then just divide the amount of water evenly for as many colors as you’d like. For example, if using 4 colors, first add 1/4 cup of water.

Step 2

Add in some paint (we gave a good squirt!). Close the lid and shake until combined. 

Step 3

Cover with cotton balls until absorbed. You can stretch out the cotton balls, but it also works if your kiddo doesn’t stretch them out. We’ve done it both ways!

Step 4

Sprinkle with glitter.

Step 5

For the remaining layers, repeat steps 1-4, however, do not mix the water and paint by shaking the jar. Instead, either mix together the paint and water in a separate container and pour into the jar, or pour the water in and then gently mix in the paint with a spoon or small whisk.

Step 6

Secure the jar’s lid shut and enjoy! Set the finished product up on a shelf to enjoy for months to come!

Step 1

If you’d like to use 3 colors, fill the jar 1/3 of the way up with water. If you’d like more layers of colors, then just divide the amount of water evenly for as many colors as you’d like. For example, if using 4 colors, first add 1/4 cup of water.

Step 2

Add in some paint (we gave a good squirt!). Close the lid and shake until combined. 

Step 3

Cover with cotton balls until absorbed. You can stretch out the cotton balls, but it also works if your kiddo doesn’t stretch them out. We’ve done it both ways!

Step 4

Sprinkle with glitter.

Step 5

For the remaining layers, repeat steps 1-4, however, do not mix the water and paint by shaking the jar. Instead, either mix together the paint and water in a separate container and pour into the jar, or pour the water in and then gently mix in the paint with a spoon or small whisk.

Step 6

Secure the jar’s lid shut and enjoy! Set the finished product up on a shelf to enjoy for months to come!

Beyond Creating a Galaxy Jar Craft

There is so much to learn about science and space with this hands on arts and crafts project! While your kiddo is creating the galaxy in a jar, be sure to discuss the differences between the solar system, galaxy and universe!

The Solar System. The solar system is defined as our sun and everything that is bound to it by gravity. All those things include: our surrounding 8 planets and moons (including Earth!), meteroids, dwarf planets, and asteroids.

Galaxy. A galaxy is a system of stars, dust, and gas held together by gravity exclusive to it’s own system. Earth is located in the Milk Way galaxy, but there are billions of galaxies in the observable universe.

galaxy jar activity for kids space study

 The Universe. The universe is everything that exists. It encompasses all things throughout time and space from the people and things on our very own planet Earth, to the billions of galaxies beyond.

galaxy jar activity for kids space study

Beyond Creating a Galaxy Jar Craft

There is so much to learn about science and space with this hands on arts and crafts project! While your kiddo is creating the galaxy in a jar, be sure to discuss the differences between the solar system, galaxy and universe!

The Solar System. The solar system is defined as our sun and everything that is bound to it by gravity. All those things include: our surrounding 8 planets and moons (including Earth!), meteroids, dwarf planets, and asteroids.

Galaxy. A galaxy is a system of stars, dust, and gas held together by gravity exclusive to it’s own system. Earth is located in the Milk Way galaxy, but there are billions of galaxies in the observable universe.

The Universe. The universe is everything that exists. It encompasses all things throughout time and space from the people and things on our very own planet Earth, to the billions of galaxies beyond.

More Ways to Explore Outerspace

Here are my top picks educational toys and kits for the space lover!

Planetarium Model

This solar system planetarium set includes planets, stenciles, paint, rod, and string to create your very own model that glows in the dark!

Space Figurines

These space figurines include 2 astronauts, the first space chimpanzee, the hubble space telescope, space crafts and capsules, and a satellite!

Telescope for Kids

This portable, easy to use, and lightweight telescope for kids is a fun way for children to explore the stars and planets!

Space Sensory Box

This set comes with a wooden sandbox and includes fun space themed tools, bucket, rake, shovel, and ultra fine sand.

What’s Next?

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