Inspiration > Kids

DIY Solar Projects to Teach Your Kids About the Sun

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The University of Chicago has found that when children get a hands-on approach to science, they retain knowledge better and are more easily able to access it later on. What better way to learn about the power of the sun than by performing DIY solar experiments as a family? With these three solar projects, you are certain to get your little scientist’s wheels turning.

Human Sundial

All you need for this fun experiment is your little scientist, some chalk, and the sun to learn how shadows are created and about the earth’s rotation. Position your child in the center of your driveway, and use the chalk to draw around their feet as well as their shadow. Repeat this process every two hours for the rest of the day to see how our orientation to the sun changes over a 10 hour period. If you need a hand explaining Earth’s orbit, check out this video from Crash Course Kids.

Melted Crayon Art

If your child is more into painting than protons, get their science interests peaked by using the sun to create art. Affix crayons to a canvas with a hot glue gun in whatever pattern your child prefers, but make sure that there is enough room for the crayon to run without spilling off the edge. Once their design is complete, stand the canvas up directly in the sun’s path and wait. Over the next few hours, the crayons should begin to melt, making a fun picture you can hang in their room.

Solar Oven S’mores

The concept of using the sun’s heat to cook your food certainly isn’t a new one. However, it probably is for your kids! All you need is a pizza box, plastic wrap, tape, and aluminum foil to make the perfect temporary solar oven.


Simply cut a large flap in the lid and cover all surfaces in the foil with shiny side facing out. Attach the plastic wrap over the opening in the lid, being sure to seal every edge to help lock in the heat. Next, stack chocolate and marshmallows on pieces of graham cracker, place on a plate, and put them inside your solar oven. You will need to prop up the foil-covered flap and position it where the sun’s rays can reflect onto your s’mores. Hard as it may be, patience is key now. Depending on the temperature and time of day, it may take upwards of an hour, but your delicious sun-cooked s’mores will be well worth it!

If your children really enjoy this experiment, you can easily make a more permanent solar oven using supplies found at your local hardware store. Take the s’mores experiment to the next level by comparing how quickly various types of chocolate melt. Also, solar ovens can be used for so much more than just simple snacks! Earth Easy has some great recipes to get you cooking.

We hope these DIY projects shine a light on your child’s love of learning!

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Courtni Wisenbaker-Scheel
More about Courtni Wisenbaker-Scheel

Courtni Wisenbaker-Scheel is a mother of two, and lover of all things Danish modern. She enjoys writing professionally for Home Improvement Leads, with the goal of empowering homeowners with the expert guidance and educational tools they need to take on big home projects with confidence. HIL is your quality source for all things roofing, hvac, window, and solar leads for quality contractors.

Read more posts by Courtni Wisenbaker-Scheel

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112 responses to “DIY Solar Projects to Teach Your Kids About the Sun”

  1. Sun’s energy is the ultimate source of all energy and with kids learning how to harness it will give them a good head start for innovation.

  2. Doing DIY project is a brain enhancing activity specially for children. A great exercise for mind development.

  3. This is a true inspiration for children who wants to pursue Science. Cheers!

  4. For the advancement of the society, we should start with the kids because they are the future.

  5. Science is the key to everything, the key to progress not superstitious belief.

  6. aaa says:

    For more information about coupon visit my blog and find the best coupon and deals

  7. Great work, enhancing kids at an early age.

  8. Solar projects is much needed especially for kids so that they learn to innovate in the future.

  9. Solar projects is a great thing for children. It makes them aware about saving energy and the power of the sun’s energy.

  10. George Smith says:

    Children that are taught early about science has the highest rate of success in life.

  11. If your child is more into painting than protons, get their science interests peaked by using the sun to create art.

  12. Starting kids early is really an advantage for them as they grow they become more creative.

  13. Ryan Brown says:

    Great work when it comes to educating children about science.

  14. Tom Smith says:

    Kids are more tech-savvy today than ever before, but all that screen time (an average of five to seven hours a day) may mean less time spent interacting with physical objects, creating, designing, and developing important coordination skills.

  15. Kids projects improves hand-eye coordination. Arts and crafts often require keen hand-eye coordination. Starting at an early age will only make it much better. The more the children practice, the better their hand-eye coordination. This will help them in almost all walks of life, including their wishes to excel in sports.

  16. Peter Young says:

    It can take a lot of time to search through websites to find appropriate craft activities so we’ve done the hard work for you by pulling together some great shows that teach you and your child exciting art and craft projects to do together.

  17. When children are young, they are learning sponges. Every new experience, every word they learn, every behavior they adopt, is an investment in a more fruitful future.

  18. Having a positive attitude about reading and a curiosity about learning new things instills similar beliefs in your children. Show them that education is the ticket to fulfilling their dreams and having a productive life. Teach the value of education early in a child’s life.

  19. treespecific says:

    a good methods for kids to learn

  20. Children are born scientists. They’re always experimenting with something, whether they’re throwing a plate of spaghetti on the wall, blowing bubbles in the bath water or stacking blocks into an intricate tower only to destroy it in one big swipe.

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