Destination moon: more missions, more science is the school based theme for National Science Week in 2019. This theme celebrates the 50th anniversary of the first moon landing. The excitement of the first manned moon landing by Apollo 11 was a defining moment of the last century and has had a game changing impact on science. This theme can easily be adapted to suit preschool children because there is an abundance of quality picture books about the moon to choose from, including those recently published to commemorate the first moon walk. 

Books

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Touch the Moon

written by Phil Cummings; illustrated by Coral Tulloch.

This is a personal account of the momentous day Neil Armstrong stepped foot on the moon. In South Australia, it was a bitterly cold day in July and eleven year old Phil was watching a small black and white television screen because a man was going to walk on the moon! At the same time, outside the window, another miracle was unfolding, it snowed. For a child it was magical. Phil couldn’t decide whether to stay inside and watch man walk on the moon or go outside and play in the snow. This beautiful picture book will encourage children to be excited by the endless possibilities in their future, just as Australian author Phil Cummings was back in 1969.

Moonwalkers

written by Mark Greenwood ; illustrated by Terry Denton.

This joyous picture book celebrates Australia’s role in the Apollo 11 Moon landing. The three children in the story – Billy, Mickey and Buzz, live near ‘The Dish’.  The Dish beamed television pictures of the Moon landing around the world. The children practice being astronauts in the lead up to the Moon landing and their excitement and enthusiasm bounces off the pages thanks largely to Terry Denton’s vivid and engaging illustrations. This book is both fun and informative, a great introduction to this historical event and for encouraging children to dream big.

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When You’re Going to the Moon

written by Sasha Beekman; illustrated by Vivienne To.

Notable for Picture Book of the Year CBCA 2019

This beautiful picture book is about encouraging children to dream big, climb high and reach for the stars. The main character is a small girl who has planned a trip to the moon. And why not? When you’re a child anything can seem possible with the power of imagination. Of course there are essential supplies you simply must take with you. Things like your pet iguana, your glittery yo-yo and your yellow kazoo! The rhythmic story and detailed illustrations combine to create a bright, magical and engaging picture book. 

Songs

Zoom! Zoom! Zoom!

Zoom, zoom, zoom
We’re going to the moon

Zoom, zoom, zoom
We’re going very soon

If you want to take a trip
Climb aboard my rocket ship

Zoom, zoom, zoom
We’re going to the moon

5,4,3,2,1
BLAST OFF!

Image sourced from pixabay.

Climb Aboard the Spaceship

Sung to: “Itsy bisy spider”

Climb aboard the spaceship,
We’re going to the moon.
Hurry and get ready,
We’re going to blast off soon.
Put on your helmets
And buckle up real tight.
Here comes the countdown,
Let’s count with all our might.
10-9-8-7-6-5-4-3-2-1-BLAST OFF!

Crafty Idea

You will need a space helmet before you shoot for the moon!

You will need:

  • A3 card
  • Astronaut helmet template
  • Cellophane
  • Scissors
  • Crayons
  • Glue
  • Star stickers
  • Stapler

Method:

  • Make an A3 copy of the helmet template.
  • Cut out and decorate your helmet.
  • Cut out the face shield and glue the cellophane in place over it.
  • Write your name/child’s name on the helmet.
  • Cut some 3cm wide strips from card and attach with staples to make a headband.
  • You are now ready to blast off into space!

And Remember

Reading for pleasure is the most significant indicator of the future success of a child. Reach for the stars and happy reading!