Galaxy Solar Lights Program

The theme this summer at the library is A Universe of Stories. This a recap post from the program I did on June 13th. Here is a break down of the program including items used:

Program Description:

Join us with this out of this world mason jar activity. Create a solar powdered galaxy themed mason jar light that glows in the dark. Each participant will go home with one solar powered jar and a glow in the dark galaxy jar.

Plan/ Prep Time:

It took about an hour total to set up for the program and that was with the help of another staff member. We had to set up enough tables and chairs for 20 tweens.

mNwqetqgQauih%5npdiinA  wKcn5l0%RM+kyspU2I+i6g

Total Number of Staff Used:  2 library staff members including myself and 2 volunteers

Length of Program: 1 hour and 15 minutes. This program can be done in an hour but keep in mind we did two activities in one hour.

How it worked: 

I started the program with the Galaxy Jar that was made using water, water color paint, and cotton balls. I explained to the participants that it was important for them to pay attention. I only placed the materials needed for the first activity on the table so that way they would not get the items confused. (Plus I did not want to have 8 glass mason jars on each table.)

Here are the steps for the Galaxy Jar:

  1. Remove the lid from the mason jar
  2. Fill the mason jar 1/3 of the way with water
  3. Add a large squeeze of paint or about ten-fifteen drops of paint into the jar
    1. I recommend them using colors like pink, red, purple, blue, and green together
    2. Colors like orange, yellow, and green don’t look well together in the jar.
  4. Put the lid back on the jar and shake
  5. Once the paint has mixed, open the jar and add glitter if desired
  6. Stretch out the cotton balls and add them to the water and paint mixture until the cotton balls have fully soaked up the water. We are going to repeat steps 1-3 until the jar is full and we don’t want the paint to mix.

IMG_2659 IMG_2655

  1. Repeat steps 1-6 two more times until you are done. Filling the jar another 3rd of the way with water and adding paint.

I had them clean up the table and put the first jar aside. The first activity took about 35 minutes to complete and clean up. Then it took ten minutes to pass out the supplies for the solar light jar. Here are the steps and the supplies used for the Solar Powered Light Jar:


  • 12 oz Mason Jars
  • Solar yard lights, just the light part
  • Mounting Tape
  • Cork-board cut into 6.5 in long strips
  • Mod Podge
  • Fine Glitter
  • Glow in the Dark Paint


  1. Grab the solar light but do not remove the orange tab that activates the light
  2. Grab the two strips of mounting tape and wrap one strip around the solar light
  3. Then place the second strip on top of the first one and wrap it around the light
  4. Then wrap the cork-board strip around the mounting tape. It should stick.
  5. Remove the center piece from the jar lid, leaving only the part that screws onto the jar. Insert the solar light into the center. There is enough padding where the light should fit into the center without problems.
  6. Now decorate the jar and you’re done.

IMG_2645 IMG_2641YCb%0TAORreq44b2hqyXRg

Items Used and Cost:

Item Cost QTY Total Vendor
Foam Mounting Tape 5.29 4 21.16 Office Depot
Mod Podge 11.97 1 11.97 Wal-Mart
Jelly Jars Mason Jars 12oz 10.72 2 21.44 Wal-Mart
Canning Jars 12oz 8.78 1 8.78 Wal-Mart
Solar Outdoor Lights 12ct 9.67 2 19.34 Wal-Mart
Glitter 0.38oz- 12ct 6.97 2 13.94 Wal-Mart
Folkart Glow in the Dark Green 8oz Paint 5.44 2 10.88 Wal-Mart

You can just buy four 12ct packs of the 12 oz mason jars but my library had a few on hand so I chose to not buy as many. We also used water color paint and cotton balls for the second activity.

Final Thoughts

Overall, the program was a success and I had about 18 kids show up with a max capacity of 20. The tweens paid attention to the directions and were able to take home two items. I would definitely do this program again in the future but I would try to set up for the program at least two hours before hand and try to have the supplies a little more organized.

Comment below your ideas or any feedback about this list. You can use the “Contact Me” link at the top of the page to reach me or you can email me at Thanks for joining me on this adventure!



One thought on “Galaxy Solar Lights Program

Comments are closed.