The Expanding Universe
Space, time, and the entire universe started with the Big Bang. Learn about the Big Bang, Neutron Stars, and Black Holes. Then, model the expansion of the universe.
Expanding Universe Model
See a simulation of the Big Bang at the beginning of our expanding universe.
Video Courtesy NASA
Build your own model showing galaxies move away
from each other as the universe expands.
Regular Sized Balloon
Colored Pencils, Crayons or Thin Markers
Printable cutout sheet for this activity (found at the bottom of Cosmoto's Week 4 Site Page)
Cut out the 12 galaxies from the cutout sheet for this activity.
Optional: Color in each galaxy.
Barred Spiral Galaxy
Galaxy Images Courtesy NASA
Use double-sided tape or roll up a piece of one-sided tape and attach it to the back of the galaxy cutouts. (Do not attach the tape across the front side of the galaxy cutout or use more than one piece of tape per cutout as this may burst the balloon.) Attach tape to the backside of each galaxy cutout.
Attach the cutout pieces to the balloon. Space the cutouts out evenly on the balloon.
Blow the balloon up or have a parent do so. Notice how the distance between the galaxies increases as the balloon expands. This is a model of our expanding universe. As our universe continually expands, galaxies move away from us and the distance between galaxies increases.