If playdough mats are a hit with your students, these space playdough mats are a must-try. The sensory printable is a great addition to your next kindergarten or preschool space theme.
Your students strengthen their hand and finger muscles as they create space-themed shapes. There’s even a literacy component with simple sentences on the space play dough mats.
The space printable is super low-prep, so you can have it ready for the kids tomorrow. AND it can be used multiple ways. I love printables that are versatile and easy to use, what about you?
Related: Free Preschool Printables
In addition to starting discussions about things like planets, the sensory mats give kids the chance to calm themselves. Manipulating playdough helps children regulate themselves alongside practicing their fine motor skills.
You can grab your own copy of the space mats at the very bottom of this post. So be sure to do that once you’ve read through the directions.
Space Playdough Mats
Read below for some ideas and tips for using the play dough mats with your students. Keep in mind that you can make adjustments to my suggestions based on your preferences and your students’ needs.
How to Prep the Space Printable
Start off by grabbing your materials. Here’s what I usually use with our play dough mats (I may get commissions for purchases made through links in this post):
- Dry erase pocket
- Play dough
- Loose parts
- Mini erasers
- Math manipulatives
- Dry erase markers
Now, keep in mind that you don’t truly need all of the above materials for your own space playdough mats. Many of the items listed are options the children can use with the mats.
Related: Farm Animal Playdough Mats
Once you have your supplies, it’s time to get the play dough mats prepped. As I mentioned earlier, there’s not too much to the prepping process! Print the mats you’d like to use and then pop them in dry erase pockets. You can laminate the space mats if that’s your preference.
How to Use the Space Playdough Mats
Now that the play dough printable is ready to go, call the kids over. Have the children help choose play dough colors that coordinate with the space pages. Then sit back and let the children play and create. Yes, it’s that simple!
Some children will roll playdough snakes to create the shapes on the mats. Others will pull chunks of playdough and use the pieces to form the images. Still others will make their own version of the space-themed items. And some of the kids will want to make their own playdough creations, space-related or not.
No matter how your students use the space playdough mats, there’s a lot of room for conversations. Observe their stories and discussions, and ask some leading questions along the way if you’d like.
More Ways to Use the Playdough Mats
You and the children can think outside the playdough, too! Here are a few other ways to use the space playdough mats with your students:
- Have your students use loose parts or math manipulatives to trace over the space images.
- Let the kids use dry erase markers to do the same.
- Challenge the children to make up their own planets using playdough.
- Do the same with spaceships or aliens!
- Ask the children to count how many manipulatives it takes to cover up the pictures on the mats.
- Have the kids use manipulatives to measure the different objects on the mats.
Honestly, your students will come up with additional ways to use the play dough mats! I love watching and listening to the kids create new ways of playful learning.
What’s Included in the Printable?
The free printable space playdough mats comes with 8 color pages of playdough fun. Here are the space-themed items on the printable pages:
- Shooting star
- 2 additional planets
I think the additional planets look like Jupiter and Saturn. But I kept those pages labeled with, “I can make a planet” in case the kids want to create their own planets on the pages. Don’t forget to sign up for the space playdough mats at the bottom of this page!
More Space Activities for Preschoolers
If you and the kids love a good space theme, here are more ideas for you to try. I think these activities are great for preschool, pre-k, and kindergarten children (but you know the kids in your care the best!):
- Coffee Filter Planets
- Outer Space Play Dough
- Space Sensory Bin
- Space Color by Number
- Fizzing Planets
- Space Pattern Block Mats
- Galaxy Slime
You can also pop over to my Space Theme Pinterest board for even more ideas.
Play Dough Mats & Space Lesson Plans
Let Preschool Teacher 101 make your work life a whole lot easier with fully-developed early childhood resources! We have lesson plans, circle time songs, math and literacy lessons, STEM challenges, digital games, teacher guides, and so much more. Our membership for preschool and kindergarten teachers, The Pack, gives you even more value!
Click on the image below to get our non-seasonal, thematic playdough mats bundle. You’ll get over 140 pages, in color and black-and-white, for 15 themes to engage young children.
We also have done-for-you products focused solely on a space theme. The lesson plans are a 226-page pack with a weekly overview, detailed daily plans, book suggestions, whole group lessons, small group activities, center ideas, editable weekly outlines, and related printables!
The space dramatic play set has over 150 pages just for your pretend play center. You’ll find directions and setup suggestions, along with printables to inspire and support imaginative play.
You can also find our full products in our Teachers Pay Teachers store, if that’s your preferred place to shop.
Get the Space Playdough Mats
The space printable is available to members of Fun-A-Day’s (free!) email community. If that’s you, please enter your email address in the form below to get the download link sent to your inbox.
If you’re not a member yet, you can enter your information in the same form to join us. You’ll receive the space playdough mats as a welcome gift!