10 – 12

How big is the universe?


How big is the universe?

What to do with this activity?

How big is the universe?

The answer is that it is bigger than any human can understand - it is infinitely big. Our solar system - with earth as just one of the planets revolving around our sun - is the tiniest part of our galaxy. Our galaxy in turn is only one galaxy out of 200 billion galaxies - and that's only the number of galaxies that can be seen. Scientists are discovering new ways of exploring the scale and complexity of the universe, but so much of it is still unknown. Have a look at this information from the European Space Agency or watch this crash course video from Spaced Out.

It is profoundly humbling to think about how small our earth and we humans are within the universe. When Voyager 1 took a photograph from the edge of our solar system, our earth was only a pale blue dot one pixel wide. Listen together to the amazing speech made by scientist Carl Sagan about that "Pale Blue Dot". Talk about it afterwards. It might change your idea of what is important and what is not!


  • Why am I doing this?

    Children gain confidence in speaking through demonstrating their knowledge to others. Chatting and listening to your child will help build their communication skills. Talking about words and their meaning in everyday life will also help build your child’s vocabulary – and your own!

  • How can I do more?

    Funny stories are interesting and a good excuse to get your child talking. At mealtimes, each family member could tell something interesting or something funny that happened during the day. Watching TV together can also provide a good opportunity for chat and to discuss what you are watching. Check if your child understands different things they hear and encourage your child to teach you new words and things they have learnt.

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