Paper Plate Layers of the Earth Project

I would go back to elementary school right now if I could have Ms. Frizzle as a teacher. Would you?

Imagine all the adventures!

Luckily, it’s just as much fun to pick up on the Magic School Bus books and head off on a field trip. I just love these books. They’re packed full of fun, facts, and learning. And, they inspire so many fun activities.

This time we’re learning a bit about earth science with this Paper Plate Layers of the Earth Project.

Use paper plates to make this simple earth science activity, a Layers of the Earth Project inspired by The Magic School Bus Inside the Earth.

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This fun (and very simple) earth science activity was inspired by The Magic School Bus Inside the Earth by Joanna Cole and Bruce Degen. (As a matter of fact, this book has inspired several other project too. I can’t wait!)

In this book, the kids and Ms. Frizzle travel deep inside the earth. They (and your own kids) learn all about rocks, the make-up of our planet, caves, and all sorts of fun earth science information.

Supplies Needed:

The Magic School Bus Inside the Earth by Joanne Cole and Bruce Degen
1 paper plate per project
Pencil
Dark brown, orange, yellow, and lighter brown craft paint
Black marker

Use paper plates to make this simple earth science activity, a Layers of the Earth Project inspired by The Magic School Bus Inside the Earth.

How to Make Your Paper Plate Layers of the Earth Project

Flip your paper plate over. We’ll be creating on the bottom of our paper plate.

For most of our  layers, we’ll be using the markings on our paper plate as a guide. But, to start with, use your pencil to draw the inner core in the middle of the paper plate. Paint the small middle circle dark brown.

Next, paint the outer core. use the orange paint to paint up to the circular line on your plate.

Use paper plates to make this simple earth science activity, a Layers of the Earth Project inspired by The Magic School Bus Inside the Earth.

Paint the textured section yellow for your mantle and finally paint a thin strip of light brown around the outer edge of your plate for your crust.

Feel free to change up these colors. You can use whatever colors you want!

Use paper plates to make this simple earth science activity, a Layers of the Earth Project inspired by The Magic School Bus Inside the Earth.

Once all your paint has dried, use your black marker to label the layers of the earth.

Your center circle is the inner core, next layer is the outer core, then the mantle, and finally the crust.

If you make this project in conjunction with reading The Magic School Bus Inside the Earth, you can learn about each of the layers and what they are made up of. This layers of the earth project is a great complement to the book.

Use paper plates to make this simple earth science activity, a Layers of the Earth Project inspired by The Magic School Bus Inside the Earth.

If you enjoyed this layers of the earth project, the above photo is perfect for sharing on Facebook or you can save the photo below on Pinterest.

Use paper plates to make this simple earth science activity, a Layers of the Earth Project inspired by The Magic School Bus Inside the Earth.

You may also like one of these science activities:

Jack Be Nimble Science Activity

5 Ways to Learn with a Daily Weather Report

Fun Kitchen Science Experiments for Kids

Hot Chocolate Science at Creative Family Fun

3-D Layers of the Earth Model at Rainy Day Mum

Spooky Sounds Experiments for Kids inspired by The Magic School Bus in the Haunted Museum: A Book About Sound at Read Science


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Terri is a writer and mom of two elementary-aged girls. She has a passion for learning and is always looking for ways to make learning fun. You can find her here writing about fun learning activities, art, craft, and family fun ideas.

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