It’s not a surprise to talk about Mars on this date because today it’s the Red Planet Day – the day when we remember the launch of the Mariner 4 spacecraft on November 28, 1964. It was the first successful Mars flyby mission that captured┬áthe first pictures of the Martian surface.

Wow! Can you believe it? It’s been 50 years! Now, that’s a number to celebrate. How about a few home games you can play together with your kids in memory of Mariner 4? The mission lasted for 3 years and 23 days, but we’re going to turn years into days and have a 3-day journey at home.

1. Hop into our spaceship


Easily prepared spaceship can be made of a simple cardboard box with a little imagination from you and your little astronauts. Here’s what you will need:

  • 1 bigger cardboard box
  • Newspaper or a magazine
  • Glue
  • Scissors
  • Duct tape

How to make a spaceship?

  • Use a duct tape to tape all loosened parts of your cardboard box (it should be firm and safe)
  • Cut out the pages of your newspaper or a magazine
  • Glue the pages all over your cardboard box (or cut pieces to make a variety of patterns)

Other interesting ideas can include simple Christmas tree decorations made of paper or some other glittering and shining materials to decorate your spaceship with. We know kids will have plenty of creative ideas for you.

2. Find your launch base

Download this fun spaceship maze and help your child find a base for the spaceship! Make sure the downloadable becomes a lovely picture with many colors before the spaceship finds its way back home.

3. Make your wooden spaceship


Do you know why loose parts, such as wooden blocks, always play a significant part in children’s play? Our teacher Wenone has recently written about encouraging creativity with loose parts, you might want to find out more. As for our Mars game, we decided to build a special spaceship out of our wooden blocks and create a lovely game in which we can use our fingers and imagination.

The image above shows how a wooden spaceship looks like. While creating one with your kids, you can talk about the name of your spaceship, as well as the people on the spaceship and all the amazing things that would be going on inside. Once the spaceship is done, you can use other loose parts for astronauts, space environment and ground control.

You will enjoy to see your little ones use their language skills and imagination to create a story. Help them in their little storytelling and even write down the story to tell it over again as one of your bedtimes stories.

Have fun traveling to Mars together and let us know what an amazing ride you’ve had this weekend!