Do you participate in Earth Hour? Where millions of people around the globe turn off the electricity for an hour, as a massive show of concern for the environment? This year it falls on Saturday, March 23rd, from 8:30-9:30 PM in each time zone.
One year we were in Las Vegas, standing on the Strip during Earth Hour… now that was strange! I tried to take a photo but it was literally too dark!
This year I wanted to spend a little bit of time talking about the environment with my kids (why we recycle, why we turn off the lights when we leave a room and adjust the air conditioning when we leave the house… that kind of thing). But I also wanted to have some fun in the dark!
This is our favorite ‘power outage’ kid activity… and it only requires 2 items: some highlighter pens and a black light. A friend gave us this idea a few years ago and my kids just love it:
Choose whatever color of highlighter you want (though yellow does tend to show up the brightest) and then shine the black light on it. Easy peasy!
Make it a game by drawing without the black light, then turning the light on and seeing if your artwork came out as you had intended. Of course you can also draw on paper, but the kids just thought it was SO. MUCH. FUN. drawing on themselves and each other. And especially on Mom and Dad. (Seriously, how often do you remember getting to draw on your parents as a kid?)
Afterwards, everyone takes a good bath and has a laugh at any photos you took (take them with the flash OFF).
The kids attacked Dad’s foot with all the colors we had:
And even Mom’s leg wasn’t immune:
We already had the black light, because they are sold as scorpion finders in the desert (thankfully ours has never found one!). Though I use mine to look at the dust bunnies behind the furniture — when you need to clean, they are more motivating than watching an episode of Hoarders! You may also have one if you have a pet, to check for pet stains. But if you can’t find one in your Halloween supplies, then you can also get them inexpensively (as in, less than $10 or so shipped) on Amazon. This is the one I ordered (click on the photo for details):
I hope you have as much fun doing this as we do! And you don’t have to wait for Earth Hour, it’s also a hit at slumber parties, and whenever you want to wear the kids out before bed!