How to SAFELY View a Solar Eclipse

Safe Solar Eclipse Viewers

For anyone viewing a solar eclipse directly it’s IMPORTANT to protect your eyes. Here are some ways to watch the eclipse without burning your eyes out. Seriously, DO NOT look directly at the sun, even if its behind the moon, without proper eye protection. Luckily, Danger Ranger has you covered.

Solar Eclipse Glasses

You can purchase solar eclipse glasses online and at local stores.  Instead of listing the hundreds of places you can find solar eclipse glass, check out by clicking the image below for a HUGE list of Reputable Vendors of Solar Filters & Viewers. Already have glasses and want to be sure they are safe? Look on your solar eclipse glasses for a mark indicating the they are ISO 12312-2 compliant or visit the link below and check the lists for the store where you purchased your glasses.

Get Solar Eclipse Glasses for FREE

Did you know you can get solar eclipse glasses for FREE?! Here are recommended places to look for FREE Solar Eclipse Glasses.

Libraries with FREE Solar Eclipse Glasses

Many libraries have FREE solar eclipse glasses. Star_Net has

“distributed over 2 million free eclipse glasses and 4,000 education kits to over 7,000 library locations (public libraries, state libraries, book mobiles, tribal libraries). This represents nearly one half of all libraries in the country.”

To find a library near you hosting an eclipse event with FREE solar eclipse glasses, click on the map below to go to the Star_Net site.

This map shows the location of libraries hosting eclipse events in the August 21, 2017 eclipse. Credit: STAR_Net’s NASA@ My Library initiative, Space Science Institute, the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation, NASA, and Google.


NASA Events with FREE Solar Eclipse Glasses

NASA has donated over 1.5 million ISO-compliant safe solar eclipse glasses to locations around the country designated as “official viewing locations”. Click the map below to find an event near you.


Solar Eclipse Glasses Donated to Local Schools and Community Centers

Astronomers Without Borders (AWB) has distributed over 100,000 ISO-compliant solar eclipse glasses thanks to donations from Google, Big Kid Science (, Explore Scientific (, American Astronomical Society (, Celestron ( Check with your local schools and community centers to find out if they have received these free solar eclipse glasses from AWB.

Visit Astronomers Without Borders for more information about the AWB Resource Sharing Program or to donate to this great cause.

DIY Solar Eclipse Viewers

I purchased solar eclipse glasses, but who doesn’t love a themed DIY project?! Here are some good sites I found for instructions on how to make your very own solar eclipse viewers from items you have laying around the house. The basic supplies for most DIY viewers include a container of some kind, scissors, aluminum foil, tape, a straight pin, and white paper.

Cereal Box Viewers

For added fun, decorate your cereal box eclipse viewer. You can cover your cereal box with paper and then paint, color, draw, or glitter on your viewer as much as you’d like.

Deirdre at has a fun tutorial on making a Cereal Box Viewer. Click the image below to check it out.

Here is another Cerial Box Viewer tutorial from

Cardboard Box Viewer

I already have boxes set aside to make eclipse viewers as part of our solar eclipse day of fun. You can use a diaper box, amazon box, shoe box, etc. Anything box shaped and opaque will do.

Ludavia over at has a Solar Eclipse Viewer tutorial that uses a diaper box. She even shows how to decorate you viewer box. Click the image below for this diaper box tutorial.


Don’t have a diaper box, here is a tutorial by the National Science Teachers Association for creating an eclipse viewer using a shoe box. This tutorial has an great one page pdf that can be printed.

Tube Viewer

Tube style viewers can be made from a toilet paper or paper towel roll, Pringles can, or shipping tube. Here is a simple tutorial from using a wrapping paper tube to create an eclipse viewer. Click their image below to get to the tutorial.

Paper Viewer

This style of viewer is probably the simplest. You only need a couple of sheets of paper or other material such as paper plates in addition to the basic supplies listed above and you are all set. Here is an easy tutorial for NASA’s Jet Propulsion Lab. Click the image below to check out their tutorial.

No matter what viewer you decide to make our buy, you will enjoy safely viewing a solar eclipse!

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