You will often find that children become interested in things that are happening around them, something that captures their interest. Such as if they have watched the news or heard the information about the moon, with it being a super moon, it’s brighter and closer to earth than usual, the first for nearly 20 years. Maybe you’ve been outside to have a look at the moon with your children.
Also if they are exposed to an interesting place or experience it can trigger off an interest. For instance a visit to a planetarium can spark off an interest in space, there are various planetariums around, see if you can find one close to where you live, they are certainly worth a visit. They are generally good to visit from about age 7 upwards, and some actually have a minimum age for admission. Generally the child needs to be able to sit still and concentrate and not mind being in the dark.
For any children interested in constellations, there is a great phone app called google sky map. It’s fantastic, just point the phone at the sky and it matches up where you are and tells you what constellations, or planets you are looking at. It really brings astronomy alive, and makes it interesting in a modern way, that the children of todays technology age can relate to.
Once their interest is sparked, it’s useful to have some information resources at home for them to immerse themselves in and find out more.
Posters are good, very visual and immediate to look at and find out the information you want. Below is a good one showing the constellations, having a planet one is a good idea too, some show pluto, some don’t, it depends if they take into account it’s reclassification. The middle link below is a bigger sized poster than standard posters and is very detailed.
Books are a great way to find out information too, these tend to be more generically about space, but consequently tend to hold more varied information. The first book linked to is an ideal book for a younger child with an interest in space, it keeps the style simple, while still providing information suitable for a preschool child, ideal for a 3-4 year old. The second book is an Usborne see inside book, which are great for interactive learning, as they contain lots of information flaps to open really bringing the book to life, and is suitable for approx. 5-7 year olds. Next is a book, Solar System, aimed at the age group of 7+, it has more information than the first too, but is still larger print with lots of pictures. The last book the Encyclopedia of space, is packed with lots of information, and is suitable for older children, or those who are simply wanting more depth of information, it’s more aimed at the 9+ age group but younger children may enjoy looking through it, particularly if they have a strong interest in space, or have exhausted the simpler books and are ready for more.