Reagan has really developed a love for pretend play, so I know that in the next coming months, I am going to really add a lot of dramatic play and pretend play props and scenery to our units.

I have had it in my mind to do a mission control set for space theme for a while now and of course, it happened at the same time that we moved and we have countless cardboard boxes, which can only mean one thing: we’re going to build a cardboard rocket for pretend play!

Grab a FREE copy of the template in the Required Materials section below.

Lil’ Explorers Focus Skills

Drama

  • Engage in pretend play
  • Utilize familiar props for their intended purpose (use a phone to call someone) and invent new purposes for them

Lil’ Creators Focus Skills

Drama

  • Engage in pretend play to represent known and make believe situations
  • Utilize familiar props for their intended purpose (use a phone to call someone) and invent new purposes for them

Required Materials

*Affiliate Link

NASA Pretend Play Template

3 Large Cardboard Boxes

*Packing Tape

*Tin Foil

*Glue

*X-Acto Knife

Rocket
  1. Secure a cardboard box so that the bottom is closed and the top has the flaps standing straight up. 
  2. Place a second cardboard box on top of the first one with the open flaps pointing down. The second box will have all of the flaps open (even the flaps on the very top).
  3. Wrap tape around the seam where the two boxes meet to secure them together.
  4. On the top front and back flaps, use an X-Acto knife to cut a fold. You want to cut from the bottom corner up to the top creating a small triangle. You do not want to push the X-Acto knife all the way through the cardboard. You only want to push about half-way through when you cut so it creates a bend or fold.  You will also do this on the opposite side of the flap so that now and you should have a trapezoid shape with two triangles on both sides that fold back. Do this on both the front and back flaps on the very top (don’t do it for the side flaps).
  5. Fold the triangle pieces back and tape the side flaps to the trapezoid shape to create a point or the top of the rocket. There will be a gap at the top that we will need to cover.  
  6. Cut the last cardboard box into four squares. 
  7. Fold one square of the cardboard over the top of the rocket and tape it down to cover the hole at the top. 
  8. Using two other pieces, cut fins out by cutting a quarter circle using an X-Acto knife.  
  9. Tape the fins to the side of the rocket. 
  10. Cut out the door to your rocket and commence play-time!
Mission Control Center
  1. Wrap a piece of cardboard with tinfoil. 
  2. Print out the NASA Pretend Play Template. 
  3. Glue the pages on to the tinfoil. 
  4. Tape your control center inside your rocket. 

Teacher Tip

I totally understand if the rocket is a bit too much of a commitment for you. You can certainly just make the mission control center and pretend that your couch or any other area of your house has transformed into a rocket.

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