Parenting

21 stellar space toys to celebrate National Space Day

These space-inspired toys and books are out of this world

Little girl and dad playing with her homemade planetarium as she holds a rocket ship while laughing. Credit: Getty Images / mixetto

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It’s National Space Day! Is your little cadet prepared?

Space always holds a fascination for kids. If you have a space-obsessed kid it's been an incredible year to inspire their love and curiosity of galaxy and beyond.

While it's unlikely they'll be able to take that mission to Mars we are sure they are dreaming about, today is a great day to stoke that curiosity with these STEM and STEAM toys that will inspire their inner astronaut, astrophysicist, and NASA scientist.

1. A beginning circuit set

circuit
Credit: Educational Insights

This beginner circuit set is a perfect intro for little builders.

Best for ages: 5 to 8
This space station is filled with fun, electronic ad-ons that make for some seriously stellar play time. This intro-to-circuit-building set is filled with easy-to-master built-in connections. Instead of creating flat circuits on a flat board, kids can build realistic-looking 3D toys that, once accurately connected, light up, make sounds, and move. Cute alien action-figures help complete the cosmic scene.

Get the Educational Insights Circuit Explorer Deluxe Base Station at Amazon for $59.99

2. An astronaut starter set

Kiwi
Credit: KiwiCo

Kiwi Co is one of our favorite STEM kits and this space-themed set is filled with fun crafts and cool facts.

Best for ages: 7 to 12
Blast off with STEM-based activities to get your future astronauts excited about space exploration. Kiwi Co is one of our favorite STEM kits for kids, and this space-themed one is filled with fun DIY activities and all sorts of fun facts about space travel, from the history of space exploration, to the challenges of astronaut training, to amazing facts about life on the International Space Station.

Get the Astronaut Starter Kit at KiwiCo.com for $29.99

3. Spaceships that hold up in intergalactic battles

SnapShips
Credit: Snap Ships

These bricks stay together for builds that really stand up to play.

Best for ages: 6 and up
This futuristic set is built for battle. This versatile building system is made from sturdy, interlocking pieces that are made for action play. All of the sets are interchangeable, so—whether they are building for space exploration or for alien battle—there’s no limit to the creative ways they can use these affordable sets.

Get Snap Ships ST-33 gunship at Target for $19.99

4. A miniature Mars mission

Playmobile
Credit: Playmobil

This Playmobil set is sure to inspire hours of imaginative play.

Best for ages: 5 to 10
Let their imagination take them to infinity and beyond! This space station toy is ready for hours of pretend play. The set is filled with intricate little details and lots of bells and battery-powered whistles like lights and sounds to make the whole mission feel authentic—even if it never leaves the playroom floor. Astronauts, a robot, space crystals, astronaut food, and hydroponic plants make it a perfect play set for any kid who’s ever dreamed of their own mission to Mars.

Get the Playmobil Mars space station at Target for $58.99

5. A LEGO research shuttle

Lego
Credit: Lego

City Lego takes to outer space with this shuttle, astronaut, rover, and drone set.

Best for ages: 6 and up
The bricks are really embracing the stars, with this red-planet ready 273-piece set. The Lego-lover in your life will have an out-of-this-world experience with a space shuttle, astronauts, two drones, and an extraterrestrial rover with an articulated grappling arm.

Get the Lego City Mars research shuttle at Target for $31.99

6. An eco-friendly space station

playpress
Credit: PlayPress

An earth-conscious toy for kids that like outer space.

Best for ages: 3 to 8
This plastic-free interlocking space station is earth-friendly, and outer space-inspiring. This interlocking building set turns into a science and exploration station complete with a fully opening hatch, moveable solar panels, and an opposable grappling arm for the astronaut to work in space, as well as all of the miniature repair tools, logs, and space gear that toy astronauts need to keep their Space Station in tip-top shape.

Get the PlayPress space station at Maisonette for $24.99

7. A space-themed music box

Janod
Credit: Janod

This music box will lull them to sleep as they dream of the stars.

Best for ages: 18 months and up
This sweet music box is an out-of-this-world keepsake that will capture the imaginations of even the littlest space cadets. Wind it up and watch the rocket orbit around the little planet (which features its very own mini moon), all while music gently plays.

Get the Janod galaxy music box at Crate & Barrel for $24.99

8. A cuddly astronaut with a sweet carrying case

MeriMeri
Credit: MeriMeri

This soft and cuddly astronaut is sure to inspire celestial dreams.

Best for ages: 2 to 6
Who says outer space isn’t snuggly? This adorable soft and stuffed astronaut doll with mini jetpack and a space shuttle carrying case is just what they need when they are ready to snuggle up and dream about the stars.

Get the astronaut mini-suitcase doll at MeriMeri for $32

9. A pixelated alien and astronaut set

plus
Credit: PlusPlus

Take me to your leader!

Best for ages: 6 and up
Sure, we’ve been told there aren’t any real Martians but it’s still fun to think about what kind of neighbors might be occupying our red planet next door. With this cool construction set kiddos can imagine what sort of life forms the we might find in outer space—and build the astronaut that discovers them.

Get the PlusPlus alien and astronaut bundle at Amazon for $24.99

10. A book of the coolest space facts

Betts
Credit: Rockridge Press

This book by a planetary scientist really is filled with some of the coolest space facts.

Best for ages: 6 to 10
Who doesn’t love super cool space facts? Almost any book by planetary scientist Dr. Bruce Betts is a good bet for a kid that is truly interested in space, but this one is like an exploding supernova of incredible and entertaining facts about the mystery of our galaxy and solar system and the history of space exploration.

Get Super Cool Space Facts for Kids by Dr. Bruce Betts at Amazon for $9.98

11. A planetarium they can bring home

Planetarium
Credit: Discovery Kids

This cool toy is a nightlight and a planetarium all in one.

Best for ages: 3 to 10
Nothing beats falling asleep beneath the stars—unless you get to fall asleep under enormous images of Venus, Jupiter, and Mars. This projector turns their bedroom into their very own planetarium where they can have a front seat to all of the best sights in our solar system.

Get the Discovery Kids space and planetarium projector at Target for $24.99

12. A very cool dust globe

globe
Credit: Humango

This globe simulates a Martian red sand storm.

Best for ages: 5 and up
This is a must for any Mars enthusiast. Give kids a real view of what a walk across a Martian landscape will be like. This dust globe gives a birds-eye view of what a trek across the surface of Mars during a red sand storm might really be like.

Ge the Humango Toys Mars Dust Globe at Amazon for $38

13. A rocket kit that’s astronomically fun

13
Credit: Little Passports

Future NASA engineers can build their very own rocket.

Best for ages: 5 to 8
Stomp rockets are a blast but when we are talking about building stop rockets—well that’s just out of this world! This astronomical craft crate by one of our favorite subscription boxes will inspire your future NASA engineer to blast off. Kids will learn how to build a foot-powered stomp rocket and cool a star dome, for fully STEM experience, as they explore aerospace engineering and physics.

Get the Little Passports Create Your Own Rocket kit for $29.99

14. A book series about catstronauts

Catstronauts
Credit: Little Brown

A book series about astronaut cats that need to save humanity though space exploration.

Best for ages: 6 to 10
Nothing beats a graphic novel series to get their imagination going. In this teacher-recommended series cats are the ultimate space travelers and book two is all about their mission to Mars. It’s a rush to see who will be the first cats to land on Mars. Will it be the esteemed CatStronauts Major Meowser, Pom Pom, Blanket, and Waffles? Or will it be their rivals, the CosmoCats?

15. Finger puppets that are set for space exploration

Etsy
Credit: ThatsSewPersonal

This finger puppet set is perfect for the tiniest aspiring astronaut.

Best for ages: 18 mos to 4
This adorable finger puppet set will inspire even the littlest minds to explore our galaxy. This 16-puppet set includes the sun, Mercury, Venus, Earth, Earth's moon, Mars, Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, Neptune, Pluto, an astronaut girl, an astronaut boy, a star, alien spacecraft, and a rocket. They all fit into an optional Earth zipper carrying case.

Get the solar system-themed finger puppets at Etsy for $4 each

16. A solar powered space rover

green
Credit: Green Science

Kids can make their very own solar-powered rover with recyclables with this kit.

Best for ages: 6 and up
Most Mars and moon rovers are actually nuclear powered, but it’s still fun to make a moving rover that’s powered by the sun. We love this DIY kit that turns your recycling into a STEM project and teaches about alternative energy sources.

Get the Green Science solar powered DIY Mars rover at Amazon for $14.99

17. An official-looking space suit with real NASA patch

Aeromax
Credit: Aeromax

Suit them up for series interstellar play!

Best for ages: 3 to 12
It feels pretty good to look the part and with the official NASA patch, no one will deny that your little one is shooting for the stars with their space exploration aspirations. This comes with an Apollo 11 mission patch and the Apollo Program patch, plus a very official-looking embroidered NASA cap. This comes in orange, white, and pink.

Get the Aeromax Jr. astronaut suit with cap at Amazon from $27

18. A space helmet for their first mission

Helmet
Credit: Aeromax

This helmet will make them feel like they are ready to trek through outer space.

Best for ages: 3 to 10
No exploration of the mind is complete without the proper costume details. This helmet will help complete the look with a tinted movable visor, a NASA logo, colorful decals, and an American flag.

Get the Aeromax space helmet at Amazon for $16.95

19. A rocket ship for an interstellar staycation

19
Credit: Oriental Trading Co.

This play house makes playtime astronomically fun.

Best for ages: 3 to 6
This play house is truly out of this world. All it takes is some markers and imagination to make this craft ready for lift-off. This Color Your Own Rocket Ship features dual doors, window, porthole and pretend control panel—key for when mission control needs to contact them to come out for lunch.

Get the Color Your Own Rocket Ship Playhouse at Oriental Trading for $29.99

20. A solar system mobile

mobile
Credit: 4m

A DIY mobile kit of our solar system is a fun learning toy and cool room display.

Best for ages: 8 and up
They can make the solar system their own with this DIY glow-in-the-dark mobile kit. This kit includes eight snap-together planets, the sun, the paint to make them vibrant, and a hanging frame. It also comes with a poster for deeper learning of fun solar system facts.

Get the DIY 3-D glow-in-the-dark solar system kit at Amazon for $20.99

21. A board game to make Mars inhabitable

terraform
Credit: IndieBoards

It's a race to make Mars inhabitable for humans.

Best for ages: 12 and up
It’s the year 2400 and mankind has begun to terraform the planet Mars to make it inhabitable. Players must raise the temperature, the oxygen level, and the ocean coverage until the environment is habitable for human life. Who will be able to make the planet hospitable to humans first? This game has over 200 challenges for players to solve.

Get the Terraforma Mars board game by IndieBoards on Amazon for $64.39

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