How Big?


An activity commonly undertaken for this section of the curriculum is to produce a wall chart, with a 2 m diameter disc of yellow paper to represent the Sun, and discs of appropriately coloured card to represent the planets. As planet sizes and separations are generally incompatible on the same scale, the separations are usually compressed. However this point is frequently missed by a number of the students, leading to a false perception of the overall scale of the Solar System.

Students can make accurate scale models so long as they have access to a playing field or sports field.


KS 3

Sci 4.4 b) The relative positions of the Earth, Sun and the planets in the solar system.

Sci 4.4 c) About the movement of planets about the Sun and to relate these to gravitational forces.

KS 4

Sci 4.4 a) The relative positions and sizes of planets stars and other bodies in the Universe.




1 large yellow balloon

Assorted spheres (balls, ball bearings, plasticine etc.)

Trundle wheel, large tape measure or reliable paces.


Word Documents



Scale Model Planner


Image Files ( download each file )

Mercury Mars Uranus
Venus Jupiter Neptune
Earth Saturn


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