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Astronomy Unit: Stars

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Welcome to our astronomy unit!  Hooray!  Well... I'm feeling quite overwhelmed by it.  When I look back at my public school education, this is one area I remember learning very little about.  I can tell you the phases of the moon, but that's it.  Needless to say I'm learning right along with the kiddos.

Lesson planning this week proved to be quite the adventure.  We're going away on vacation!  What you ask?  Learning time and vacation?  Yes!  My special needs kiddos do not do well with changes in routine.  They tend to break down, so besides our vacation adventures (about one a day) we'll be having our workbook time, journal time, reading time, and learning time!  The challenge for me was to have everything fit in a binder.  You'll notice a lack of "fun" shelf activities. Back packs are loaded with  busy bags for the kids on the way to our destination and for on the way home. I figure they'll get all of their time in then.  Plus, we plan on doing a lot of star gazing.  The weather is supposed to be perfect.  We'll be up in the mountains away from everyone... I can't wait!

So here are my vacation modified activities!

Rhyming Words
 Bulldozer is still trying to figure out rhyming words. I was excited to find this little printable in hopes that it will help him. He is BIG into visual learning.

Source:  This printable is part of a fabulous free space packet at 3 Dinosaurs.  I made the control cards to go with the activity.

Beginning Blends
This will be our second week working on beginning blends.  Hopefully they kiddos will be able to memorize the sounds soon.

Source: This printable is part of the same fabulous free space packet at 3 Dinosaurs.  I made the control cards to go with this activity.

I'm not sure if this activity will be more for me or for them. Although I'm guessing it will prove to be a little difficult for them. They will really have to study the pictures to be sure they match up.

 Source:  I found these beautiful free cards at Montessori for Everyone.

Constellation Dot-to Dot
The kiddos seem to be getting really great at dot-to-dot activities. I'm hoping theses are a huge success!

 Source:  I found these free dot-to-dot printables at and Making Learning Fun.

Fraction 1/2
Dinomite LOVES fractions.  Princess and Bulldozer have never been introduced to them.  I really liked how this worksheet provided it's own control!

 Source:  I found this free printable as part of the space packet at  3 Dinosaurs.

Star Skip Counting
The kiddos can count by 5s.  Dinomite can count by 10s.  However none of them can count by 2s yet.  Hopefully this will be a great introduction.  As a control, I put pony beads on a pipe cleaner. As the kids skip count they can move the beads up and down.  I'm hoping it will work as a great visual for them.  I was tempted to alternate beads black and yellow, but instead I decided to group them by two and keep them all yellow. We'll see if I regret my decision.

 Source: I found this free printable as part of the space packet at 3 Dinosaurs.

Star Addition
I keep working to push those addition and subtraction facts. Princess LOVES them!  If only I could get Dinomite to practice them everyday.  This is one of my favorite activities this week. I was so excited to find glitter black felt. It was the perfect touch.  In case the idea of the activity isn't clear. The kiddos roll the dice and then put that many stars in the sky.  They're required to write the problems out along with their answers as they go. They can each do the activity ten times as allowed on their recording sheet.

 Source: I was inspired by an activity I saw at Fantastic Fun & Learning.  I made the printable on the right hand side.

Life Cycle of a Star
I was super excited to see this activity, but then I was VERY unexcited to realize I couldn't download the printable. So, I made my very own. It was my first introduction to how LOST I am with this unit.  There has been lots of homework for me!

 Source: I was inspired by an activity I saw at Counting Coconuts.  However, I could not download the free printable for some reason, so I had to create my own.  It doesn't look as great as her's but it will do.

Sky Map Puzzle
This activity has two parts to it.  During the day we will work on putting the puzzle together. However in the night, this is our up-to-date seasonal sky map for finding stars in the sky.  I've brought along a compass so we can be sure we're looking in the right direction.  I'm very excited but nervous about star gazing. I'm really hoping we'll be successful. If not I've purchased the kids star glow sticks they can play with outside.

 Source: I created this activity using an image I found at

Constellation Poking
We haven't poked in a while, so I figure the kids will have fun with these cards. They also came with matching information cards on the constellations I'm excited to read to them.

Source:  I found this idea at Counting Coconuts.  However, click here if you'd like the link to the free cards.

We'll be reading some fabulous books too!
1. The Big Dipper by Franklyn M. Branley and Ed Emberley..
2. Stars by Mary Lyn Ray and Marla Frazee.
3. Mommy's Little Star by Janet Bingham and Rosalind Beardshaw.
4. Once Upon a Starry Night by Jacqueline Mitton and Christina Balit.
5.  Zoo in the Sky by Jacqueline Mitton and Christina Balit.

I'll be educating myself about stars as I read the children's books:
1.  The Constellations by Chris Sasaki.
2.  Find the Constellations by H. A. Rey

Wish us luck with all of our fun!

A Little Note: Thank you so much to all of my readers whomever you are!  I have been astonished at how many viewers I have, as the numbers of those who read each post climb dramatically.  I would love to know who you are.  Please don't hesitate to follow my blog or leave a comment linking to your own blog or Linky Parties etc.  Your comments, e-mails, and feedback have been amazing and so kind.  I truly enjoy receiving them.  Often times they are the highlight of my day. Thank you so much!

I will be working hard to make all of my free printables accessible through my blog when I return from vacation. If you have any questions or would like free copies of any of them before I'm able to do this, please e-mail me at specifying which post the printables are from and the title of the activity.

Thank you so much!


  1. What a fun uni on astronomy!

    Thanks for linking up to TGIF! I appreciate you stopping by to share your creativity with all of us! Hope to see you again today!

    Have a great weekend,

  2. Awesome astronomy unit! Thanks so much for linking up with Montessori Monday. I pinned your post to my Astronomy Unit Study Board at I hope you're having a wonderful vacation! :)

  3. Thank you for linking up to Mom's Library, I'll be featuring you this week on
    Please stop by to grab your badge and link up more great ideas!

    1. I'm honored. Thank you so much! There will be at least two more parts to our Astronomy Unit coming soon!

  4. What a beautiful family you have Renae! I hope you are enjoying your vacation! Just stopped by from Carrots are Orange today to check out your astronomy unit. Adrian is wanting another week on space this summer! :) Thought I'd check out what your put together for some fresh inspiration! :) Thanks for sharing!

    1. Thanks for stopping by! I love your blog (as you know). There will be two more posts about our Astronomy Unit. I'm not sure if you've seen the newest post about the Sun & Moon. Next week I'll be tackling the planets.

  5. What a terrific collection of resources. Thank you for sharing your astronomy unit at Discover and Explore. I am featuring the series today.

    1. Thank you so much. I'm always so honored and humbled when my blog is featured. You've made my day!

  6. Hello from It's Our Circus Life. Thank you for an amazing selection of learning material. We are getting ready to start our space unit for homeschooling and have multiple age groups. Can't wait to use some of these.