This fun stem activity for 3 to 5 year olds gives children to the opportunity to build and test their own moon buggy. It covers a range of different EYFS goals whilst allowing children the opportunity to imagine and talk about the surface of the moon and decide how to create a vehicle for transporting astronauts.
- KiD K’NeX Vehicles Kit
- A large floor space indoors and/ or outdoors
- A ramp – this can be created using a piece of wood and some bricks or similar. (optional)
- Different coverings for ramp e.g. bubble wrap, egg boxes
Setting up the Space Buggy Activity
The activity can be introduced by showing children a video or photograph of the moon like this YouTube clip of Apollo 16’s Lunar Roving Vehicle. They can then be given the opportunity to think about, discuss and describe the surface of the moon. The following questions may help
1. What does the surface of the moon look like?
2. How does it feel to move across the surface of the moon? why might it be difficult to move around on the moon?
3. What type of vehicle would be best for moving on the moon?
Now for the real fun!
The children can begin to build their own Moon buggy using the K’NeX pieces. The kit is suitable for 8 to 10 children but for this activity 6 – 8 children will make it easier for children to experiment with a wide range of different pieces and possibilities and allow maximum creativity. The kit contains some ideas and instructions on how to construct different projects but children can use their own imagination once they work out how the different pieces fit together.
Once the moon buggies are ready, it is time to test them out. They can be pushed across a floor or down a ramp to see which goes the furthest. They can also be tested out on different surfaces including bubble wrap, concrete and grass to see which moon buggy works best.
Which of these surfaces is most like the moon? or could they create their own lunar landscape in a sand pit or sand tray?
This covers the following Early Learning Goals
ELG 03 Speaking: Children express themselves effectively, showing awareness of listeners’ needs.
ELG 04 Moving and Handling: Children show good control and coordination in large and small movements.
ELG 06 Self-Confidence and Self-Awareness: They are confident to speak in a familiar group, will talk about their ideas, and will choose the resources they need for their chosen activities. They say when they do or don’t need help.
ELG 08 Making Relationships: Children play cooperatively, taking turns with others. They take account of one another’s ideas about how to organise their activity.
ELG 17 Being Imaginative: Children use what they have learnt about media and materials in original ways, thinking about uses and purposes.