Iceland: Make your own Northern Lights Scene

The aurora borealis (also known as the Northern Lights) is a spectacular light display that can be seen at night near the North Pole. Auroras occur because of electrically charged particles that come from the Sun. There are weak spots in the Earth's magnetic field near the polar regions, and this is where the charged particles react with particles in the air to create the aurora borealis.

When we visited Iceland in October 2019, we were lucky enough to see the aurora borealis. We were staying in Reykjavik and drove about half an hour out of the city (because the city lights make it harder to see the Northern Lights) to see the amazing light show in the sky!

In this activity you can make your own Northern Lights scene.

Make your own Northern Lights Scene

You will need:

Download the leaning tower model here
  • one piece of A5 white card

  • tissue paper in a variety of colours

  • scissors

  • glue stick

  • one piece of A5 black card

  • craft knife (and an adult to use it!)

  • white coloured pencil (optional)

  • forest scene template (optional)


  1. Cut coloured tissue paper into small squares (approximately 2cm square).

  2. Glue the coloured tissue to the white piece of card, covering it. Allow to dry.

  3. Now to create the black silhouettes for the scene. You can either choose one of our template forest scenes or you can sketch out your own scene on the black card using a white coloured pencil.

  4. Either using the craft knife and an adult's help, or a pair of scissors, cut out the shapes of the silhouette.

  5. Glue one side of the black silhouette and stick it to the coloured tissue side of the white card.

You can download a free printable with all the instructions for this activity right here.

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