Tuesday, September 27, 2011

The Light Box

I've wanted to have a light table/box for a while, after seeing my blog friends use it in so many ways. This weekend I made one to use in my classroom.

I purchased a scrapbook paper storage box because I liked the shape and size. I also liked the rim along the top so things wouldn't slide off easily. I put some tape on the back of my light so it would stay put.

I tried out the light box but the light seemed really bright through the lid. Cindy suggested some parchment paper, so I added that across the top and sealed the lid.

The light was centered on the lid (as you might expect) and left some shadowy areas at the corners. But I decided to try it out anyway. I put the box on the table with some foam letters, letter bands, and floral marbles. The kids seemed to have a good time trying it out.

(The light looks more intense in the photos that it was as we used it.)

I think I'll refine the light box, adding some additional lights to create brightness on all the top. Or try a deeper box so more light will disperse through the lid. But, overall, we'll definitely use the light box in other ways again. I'm thinking it would be fun to use dry erase markers on the light box. Hmm. Maybe next time.


  1. I got lucky and found a "proper" light box at a garage sale a few years ago, Scott, but I'm thinking of switching to one of these homemade types because it just looks so much simpler to manage. I'll wait till you've perfected it, however!

  2. We made one just like that the other day Scott!!! We also made one using a wooden box with a glass chopping board sitting on the top as well as a cane basket with the glass board on top ... all out of desperation as we only have one 'real' light box ... and ALL extremely successful!
    Donna :) :)
    Great minds think alike ... apparently!

  3. Just a quick question - how are you avoiding a fire hazard with the light getting hot inside the box? I'd like to make one for class,but am worried about the Health and Safety angle.

  4. Mrs Wheatley, we used an LED camping light that did not generate any heat. I was happy with it except for the light disbursement.

  5. What a great idea, Scott! This makes it easier to manage for all involved - children and adults : )

  6. I know this is late, but an idea would be to spray the inside white and use white rope lights. You could drill a hole for the cord. Some people use silver paint, but it was pointed out to me that silver is too reflective and would show the lights themselves too much.

  7. I thought to use a thrift sale find.. an old light bright that had lost all the pegs. I took it apart to use it but found that the bulb inside was too hot and melted the plastic that I used for the 'table' part. One experiment gone wrong. It would have been ok for a short project, but not if left on. Good to know. Safety first.