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Students rocket into space while creating a compelling dimensional picture of the planet Saturn and its fascinating rings.
Saturn, the sixth planet from the sun and the second largest in the solar system, is the only planet with beautiful gas rings surrounding it. Guide students through an investigation into this fascinating celestial body beginning with student-developed questions. Post these queries on a classroom white board using Crayola Dry Erase Markers.
Once students have researched questions, invite them to create a visual of the planet using Crayola's Color Explosion paper and markers. Guide students through the drawing of a circle with a diameter of about 3 inches (7.6 cm) on the back of Crayola Color Explosion™ paper with Crayola Erasable Colored Pencils. Demonstrate how to flatten the circle slightly on the bottom edge so that it will look like the rings are in front of the planet. Students cut out the planet with Crayola Scissors. Draw another circle slightly larger than the first, flatten the bottom, and cut it out.
On both planets, encourage children to create interesting textures by using the Color Explosion color-reveal marker to draw sketchy lines following the circular shape. Insert a small circle of foam core between the planets. Attach the smaller one to the larger one with a Crayola Glue Stick. Glue another piece of foam core to the back.
Set planet cut-outs near the top center of a full sheet of Color Explosion paper. Use the color-reveal marker to trace around the larger one.
To create the planet's rings, provide students with white construction paper. Have them make patterns for the rings by drawing two concentric, partial rings with tapered ends as shown in the picture. Rings should be wide enough to fit around planet models. Students cut out their patterned rings. Trace them on the background with color-reveal markers. Suggest that students can make the rings look realistic by drawing thin lines inside each band to follow the ring shape.
Have students trace ring patterns on another sheet of Color Explosion paper. Decorate and cut them out. Small pieces of foam can be attached to the back of the rings. Then glue rings to the background on top of the ones initially drawn. This will provide pictures with dimension. Saturn and its rings pop out at you!
If Color Explosion products are not available, construction paper and Crayola Construction Paper Crayons can be substituted for this lesson plan.
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