The solar system’s eight planets come in two categories: Mercury, Venus, Earth and Mars that are smaller, rocky planets, and Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus and Neptune that are larger gas giants.
What is a planet?
Scientists define a planet as follows:
- A planet must orbit the sun.
- It needs to be large enough so that its own gravity molds it into a spherical shape.
- It must have an orbit free of other small objects.
Solar system memory game
One fun way to learn about the planets is to create a memory game, where kids match the planet with its corresponding fact. We’ve got you started with the following memory game cards. The idea is that you cut out the cards and the facts on the first and second pages.
Then you follow the memory game rules.
- Mix up the cards
- Place them upside down across a table in a single layer.
- Players choose two cards and a time, flip them over and then flip them back.
- The idea is to try to remember what’s on the other side of flipped cards.
- Once players find two cards that match (the planet with its corresponding fact) they get to keep the pair.
- The game continues until all the cards have been successfully paired.
- The player with the most pairs of cards wins.
We’ve created a series of worksheets on space for your kids to practice our planets and space.
Our solar system worksheets
In these worksheets, students work on matching descriptions to its planets, as well as naming the planets.
Earth, sun and moon practice
This worksheet asks students to fill in the blanks in statements about the Earth, moon and sun.
Phases of the moon
Students learn about the phases of the moon in these worksheets.
Space travel worksheets
In these worksheets students explore traveling to, and living in, space.