Glow Rocks

Hi scientists! My little scientist and I have been busy painting glow rocks for the past few days. It is a fun way to incorporate art and science together.


Glow-In-The-Dark Paints (Glow Paint) and Acrylic Paints


Paper plate(s)

Black Light Flashlight (Usually $10 or less in the camping section of some stores, online or specialty light bulb stores)

Recommended: Paint Shirt or Apron

Optional but recommended: Sealer for the rocks, there are various options


  1. Paint your rocks any way that you choose with whatever color combos soot your mood. The rocks will need glow paint in order to glow under black light though.
  2. Let rocks dry completely (I recommend sealing them after they are dry and letting the sealant dry completely. Follow the directions on your sealer)
  3. Enjoy your creations in the yard or in your home. When it gets dark use your black light flashlight to really make your glow rocks glow. You could even play a version of hide-and-seek with your glow rocks if you choose.

Talking Points

Your glow Rocks are able to glow due to the phosphorescent properties of the glow paint. When something is phosphorescent it is able to produce light without heat or flame. After sitting in the sun or under a light source your glow rocks will glow. Phosphorescent materials soak in UV rays and are able to hold onto the effects longer than other materials then release the energy as light.

The black light enhances the glow of the glow-in-the-dark paint. Black lights are special lights that use Ultra Violet rays or UV rays. These UV rays are different then regular light because they are not visible to the human eye. Humans can only see what is known as the visible light spectrum (The Colors of the rainbow Red, orange, yellow, green, blue, indigo, and violet. We see white all of the colors and black no color as well). So when you turn on the black light you are able to see a purple glow but not the actual UV rays. The UV Rays “charge” your glow rock paint and they shine a brighter light back at you.

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