11 Best Solar System Toys For Kids, According To Mom 2021

The Best Solar System Toys In The World, Nay, Galaxy

March 29, 2021 Updated April 29, 2021

Playing The Astronaut
Getty Images/SolStock

If your kid is in a major solar system toys phase, we get it. There’s something about outer space that captivates kids (and grown ups, tbh) of all ages. From the time they’re babies, children point to the sky, the stars, and the moon, fascinated by what’s out there. The cosmos are pretty magical, especially through the eyes of a child, which is why there is a bevy of solar system toys for kids available at every age level. And if your kid really wants to go all out, we can recommend some great telescopes, too.

The Benefits of Solar System Toys

Dr. Stephanie Ryan, Ph.D. is a Learning Scientist, mother, and the women behind the @LetsLearnAboutScience, the educational Instagram account with over 10 thousand followers. According to her, small children learn about future careers and basic science concepts through play, so playing with solar system toys can spark the beginning of their interest in science or astronomy.

“You know how your child knows all the facts about their favorite cartoon character? (I’m looking at you, Paw Patrol.) Take this idea that they soak up information from their toys and shows and apply it to their toys.”

When you think about it, learning about the planets is kind of the first time children become aware that there’s a world—or worlds—beyond the one they’re familiar with (a whole universe out there that doesn’t revolve around them? Gasp!). And the traditional solar system model isn’t the only way for them to learn, either: From puzzles and mobiles to light projectors and even sidewalk chalk shaped like the planets, the space-themed options are plentiful.

How do I find good solar system toys for kids?

It’s all about accuracy and imagery when it comes to solar system toys. Because kids learn by playing, it’s important to have accurate space and planet information on the toys you buy.

“Look for toys and puzzles that accurately represent the size and order of the planets,” said Dr. Ryan. “Make sure that the planets are in the correct order and look similar to the actual planets. Kids learn things about the surface features simply through playing, so I find it best to have good images from the start… Not all space toys have that accuracy and your child will benefit from you doing the extra research on the products.”

Luckily, we’ve done a bit of research for you, Mama. No matter how old your budding astronomer or aspiring astronaut, there’s a toy or model here that will keep yours interested, engaged, and asking questions. They’ll keep busy and learn at the same time—and isn’t that the goal? Of course, it is. So make some, er, space in their toy collection and shop our favorite finds for the kids in your orbit. 

Best Solar System Models for Kids

4M Solar System Planetarium

This solar system model for kids 8 and up helps them learn about the planets by assembling and painting their own mini planetarium. It’s a fun, simple, hands-on way to understand the world beyond ours—plus, it glows in the dark and the arms rotate to allow the changing of planetary positions. The kit comes with planets, stencils, rods, string, and paint pen, as well as a wall chart full of facts and 10 sets of Kids Quiz questions. It’s a smaller model and no batteries are required, just your kid’s two hands and some healthy curiosity about astronomy. As STEM toys go, this one is an affordable intro pick worth purchasing. A reviewer noted, “My son loves this. He was 8 when I got it for him. He put it together easily and still has it in his room. It’s easily transportable when assembled; he took it to school to show his teachers.”

$10.99 AT AMAZON



Educational Insights GeoSafari Motorized Solar System

For kids 8 and up, this motorized model includes the sun, eight planets, and the earth’s moon, with inner and outer planets moving at two different speeds to replicate the real thing. Your astronomer-in-training can choose to swap the LED sun with the included star dome to project constellations onto the wall or ceiling, as well as learn the origins of each constellation, facts about the planets, and fun riddles from the included 28-page activity guide. Four AAA batteries are required for this solar system model, which also features an auto shut-off night-light function. Reviewers have noted it’s not entirely exact in terms of scale, but in terms of STEM enthusiasm, “it will give little ones enough to get excited about our Solar system for sure!” according to one.

$20.04 AT AMAZON

Great Explorations 3-D Solar System Glow In The Dark Ceiling Hanging Kit

With this glow-in-the-dark solar system kit, your kid can transform their bedroom into a celestial stunner. In addition to nine planets that hang from the ceiling, it includes over 200 adhesive stars, comets, and asteroids to adorn the walls. The result: a galaxy all their own. A planetary guide with facts about the solar system is also included, so your kiddo can learn as they immerse themselves in the surrounding starry night. “This set was so easy to assemble and truly a fun set for my daughter and I to hang in her room,” said one reviewer, “We had a great time looking up the planets and finding out where they were in relation to the sun and using her light as the sun in her little galaxy.”

$15.98 AT AMAZON

Baker Ross Solar System Model Pack of 2

A simple solar system model that helps kids learn the positions of the planets in a hands-on way, this no-frills kit comes with 10 polystyrene “planets,” pre-cut foam pieces, wooden sticks, and instructions. Paint and decorative supplies aren’t included but anything from paint to markers to marbling ink are appropriate to color in the planets. As far as solar system toys go, this is a great starter kit for kids that doesn’t require glue—nor a major investment. “I gave this to my 5-year old granddaughter for the holidays. We had a great time putting it together and talking about the planets,” recalled a reviewer. “We made one (took about an hour) which she wanted hung in my office. Next chance we get we will make the second one that was included in the purchase. Good simple product.”

$9.31 AT AMAZON



Best Solar System Toys

The Learning Journey Glow-in-the-Dark Space Puzzle

Who doesn’t love a good puzzle? Budding astronomers will love learning about the galaxy with an extra large, 100-piece puzzle that glows in the dark! Meant for kiddos ages 3 and up, this one measures 3’x2′ and the pieces are oversized as well—ideal for little hands. Aside from teaching teeny kids about the solar system, it helps improve motor skills and hand-eye coordination, develop problem-solving and memory skills, and encourage both independent and social play. One reviewer described it as, “Very nice! A gift for my 3-yr-old grandson and he helped me put it together. All the while naming all the planets!” Another raved, “Kids loved it. My kids had fun putting it together and loved how it glows in the dark.” The planets on this puzzle aren’t labeled, but that offers an opportunity for your little to do some additional research and learning!

$15.99 AT AMAZON

Hello, World! Solar System by Jill McDonals

This book comes HIGHLY recommended by Dr. Ryan. “Jill McDonald knocked this out of the park with [Hello, World! Solar System],” she said. “It has gorgeous illustrations and bite sized facts that are perfect for littles. [My son] learned all of his planets and their order from this book when he was TWO. It is that good!”

$7.99 AT AMAZON

Learning Resources Shining Stars Projector

Great for littles ages 3 and up, this projector comes with 3 discs, each with 8 images of planets, stars, and more. It also comes with a display stand, a handle for easy carrying, and requires three AAA batteries. Just slip a disc into the slots and project onto any surface to create your own at-home Planetarium. The result: a super exciting experience toddlers will love—and learn from. As one reviewer raved, “We love this learning toy. Our just turned 3-yr- old knows all his planets in order from closet to the sun.” It’s so child-friendly, in fact, even babies love this solar system toy, according to a reviewer who wrote, “My niece is only two but she loved it since first moment. Of course she doesn’t understand yet about planets, but she likes to see the different pictures with the bright colors and shapes…it is well designed, perfect size for babies hands, the handle is perfect for them to keep the projector around, the imaging is great!”

$17.69 AT AMAZON



ERWEI 3D Solar System Model Crystal Ball

With a crystal solar system model, your kid will have the whole world—and then some—in their hands. This one, complete with planet names etched in the glass, also features an LED light-up base and a variety of colors/lighting modes (powered by AAA batteries or USB cable). Keep it in constant mode or put it on the hypnotic changing color setting –think a lava lamp-type vibe, but with more to learn. In addition to the educational aspect, the solar system crystal ball can double as a night light. Reviewers frequently mention its high quality, weighty construction, so this is a model best left on the desktop or dresser, especially with younger kids. However, it’s not limited to littles: Raved one reviewer, “Bought this for my daughter. She is studying astrophysics and I thought it would look good on her college desk. She loved it!” 

$30.99 AT AMAZON

Learning Resources Giant Inflatable Solar System

An inflatable solar system set is a great way for kids to learn with their hands. This one includes all eight planets, including an extra large Jupiter (the largest planet in the solar system), an oversized sun, and moon, all with loop hooks for hanging. The kit also comes with a pump for inflating the planets, a patch kit, and activity guide with tips. Whether for playing, hanging, or both, kids 5 and up will find a fun way to learn from this set. “So cute,” wrote a reviewer. “Purchased as a gift and the size, color, details were so much better than I imagined. Three little ones gave the planets a heavy duty romp and they stood up just fine in the pool, bath, shower, playroom and slowly made their way to hang beautifully on the ceiling. Love this, highly recommend!”

$35.49 AT AMAZON

Twee Mason's Planets Sidewalk Chalk Set

Art meets science with this solar system sidewalk chalk set for kids three and up that includes nine planets, including Pluto. Six of the planets have two layers of color (an outer core and inner core), and three have an additional “crust” layer. Larger planets are 2.5″ in diameter, the smaller ones are 1.5″ and it should be noted these handmade chalks are denser than regular chalk and only meant for gritty surfaces like sidewalks, asphalt, and concrete, not chalkboards. Also noteworthy: They’re all non-toxic, eco-friendly, and biodegradable, with no synthetic fragrances, PVC, BPA, BPS, added formaldehydes or known harmful phthalates. The packaging is also fully biodegradable and recyclable, even the clear window. What’s more: $2 from every sale of Mason’s Planets will go to the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia to support Autism research. That’s a lot to love about a sidewalk chalk set.

$40 AT MAISONETTE



Busy Puzzle Name Puzzle with Planets of the Solar System

It’s never too early to learn about the galaxy! This solar system puzzle, handmade with eco-friendly wood and nontoxic inks, is designed to teach kids ages 1-3 about the planets, letters and spelling, shapes, and counting, as well as help develop motor skills. Kids can place the planets in their correct spots (each one’s orbit is labeled by name) and play around with the little astronaut and space shuttle at the top, too. Whether it’s for your own little or someone else’s, this high-quality pick makes an out of this world gift—a sweet idea for a baby shower, too. There’s even an option to engrave a special message on the back of the board, which is an especially nice touch. Most importantly, though, it’s a hit with the kiddos. As one reviewer raved,  “The kids love it. High quality learning tool!”

$39 AT ETSY

Although we only recommend picks we really love, we may earn a commission on purchases made through links from our site.
SHOP THE STORY
stroke red
ERWEI 3D Solar System Model Crystal Ball
$30.99
4M Solar System Planetarium
$10.99
Educational Insights GeoSafari Motorized...
$20.04
Learning Resources Shining Stars Project...
$17.69
Learning Resources Giant Inflatable Sola...
$35.49
Great Explorations 3-D Solar System Glow...
$15.98
Baker Ross Solar System Model Pack of 2
$9.31
The Learning Journey Glow-in-the-Dark Sp...
$15.99
Twee Mason's Planets Sidewalk Chalk Set
$40
Busy Puzzle Name Puzzle with Planets of ...
$39
Hello, World! Solar System by Jill McDon...
$7.99