I don't claim to be an authority on the Solar System, but Lydia had school assignment to make a model. So, per Malauna's request, here's how we did it:
Balls of varying size - we used 2 touch lights taped back to back for the sun,
two medium sized styrofoam balls for Jupiter and Saturn,
different sizes of fishing corks for the rest of the planets (except Mercury) -you can use smaller styrofoam balls for these too.
We used a bead for Mercury since it's so small. We didn't include Pluto, because the assignment said we didn't have to. I'd use a bead for it too, if we had included that one.
Paint - We painted all of the planets in their appropriate colors (the corks were way easier to paint than the styrofoam).
Card stock - We cut out the rings so they were slightly smaller (on the inside) than the planet, so that they would stay tight. I also thought of using pipe cleaner and sticking the ends into the styrofoam, but we didn't have any pipe cleaner, and the card stock worked fine.
Straight pins with balls on the ends - We used these for the moons. You'll need lots if you include all of the moons; we used more than one entire package. Jupiter alone has 63 moons.
One hula hoop - We used this to hold everything up.
Fishing line - We ran it back and forth through the middle of the hula hoop, in a * kind of pattern. The sun goes in the middle with a planet on each line going around. We hung the planets from the fishing line in order, but in a circle. Mercury went closest to the sun, Venus was on the next line, but spaced about an inch or so farther away from the sun. Earth was on the next line, spaced about an inch or so farther away from the sun than Venus, etc. Since Jupiter and Saturn were the largest and also far away from the sun, it was off balance, so we added a line from the edge of the hula hoop, on their side to the main line. The main line, we tied on to the middle of all of the other lines, then it went up, so you can hang it from that.
I hope this makes sense! Sorry if it doesn't. I'll be happy to clarify if I can.
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