Needlefelting balls is a wonderful, tactile experience for the whole family. A unique way of learning geology is by felting layers in different colors to match the layers of the Earth. When the final layer is felted, you can cut it open with scissors and see the layers inside! Enjoy making these Earth spheres for your science lessons or as an Earth Day craft project!
1. Write the layers of the Earth on a piece of paper: inner core, outer core, inner mantle, outer mantle, crust. Assign a color for each layer.
Depending on the age of the children, you can make each layer match the thickness of the Earth’s actual layers to scale (e.g., the crust is very thin compared to the inner mantle). Refer to a book or online resource for a picture of the Earth’s layers.
Older children may want to select colors that represent the layers based on temperature and mineral/elemental content.
Children who are too young for using needles will love helping with the carding and rolling!
Jennifer Tan, MA is a musician, fiber artist and retired school principal who homeschools with her three children and crafts Waldorf-inspired items in their etsy shop. She and her husband lead workshops for homeschooling families at Syrendell Academy.
Jennifer and daughter Joey (age 10) travel and teach handwork throughout the US. Visit their homeschooling blog, Syrendell.