Toilet Paper Solar System

Curated and Reviewed by Lesson Planet

Can we model how large the solar system really is? Attempt an astronomical feat with a hands-on-activity that uses a roll of toilet paper. Young scientists measure the distances of the planets from the sun to create a scale model of the solar system. 

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CCSS: Adaptable
NGSS: Adaptable
Additional Tags
Instructional Ideas
  • Supplement a primary lesson on the solar system with this activity
  • Have parents or guardians donate toilet paper for the activity 
Classroom Considerations
  • Activity requires a lot of space; take the class to the gymnasium or outside playground to complete
  • Gives students a visual perspective of how large the solar system really is
  • Table included is easy to follow to measure distances using 100 or 200 sheets of toilet paper
  • None