May the 4th Be With You 2017: Star Wars Library Program

Last year I wrote about the Star Wars Day program I held on May the 4th.  It’s been such a popular post that I thought I’d share some new activities I tried this year.   But first I’d like to give a shout out to the the youth services community on Twitter.  You all rock my world and give me so many ideas when my brain is tired and Google is either overwhelming or not cutting it.  This one’s for you.

My program last year was craft heavy.  This year I’m at a new branch with a big meeting room. Plenty of space to move around. So I incorporated some activities that make good use of the space.  Here’s what we got up to:

Star Wars Name Generator


I kept this activity from last year. This year though I did have name tags they could wear around too!

Fighter Pilot Training

My friend Kim who blogs at Literary Commentary shared this idea with me.  It was so easy and so fun! Get a hula hoop, cover it with silver wrapping, cut out a hole in the corner, then decorate it to look like the death star.  I used sharpies and paint. Hang the death star using a piece of string and have kids try to fly paper airplanes through the hole.  I put lines on the floor using tape with an easy, medium, and difficult distance away from the death star.

Star Wars Bookmarks

A Portuguese kid on YouTube taught me how to make these. I love the internet. You can watch his video here. In the description box below the video there is a link to the templates for each of these characters: Chewbacca, Yoda, Princess Leia, and Kylo Ren. You start with a super simple base.  The kids were able to pick this up quick. Then colour the other pieces and glue them on.  For this activity you will need the templates, scissors, coloured pencils, and glue sticks.  I also had some green paper for kids to make Origami Yodas.

Lightsaber Battle

Anyone else have to program on a tight budget?  I would have loved to send every kid home with their own pool noodle lightsaber, but I can’t with the money I’ve got. This idea came from the brilliant Karissa who blogs at Ontarian Librarian.  I bought two pool noodles, cut them in half and created four lightsabers using duct tape and black sharpies.  In the meeting room I made two large circles with masking tape. In one circle, two kids a time faced off to see how many bubbles they can pop using the lightsabers. You can have another kid blowing the bubbles or use a bubble machine if you already have one. Have a big group? Assign some kids to be bubble counters as the duelers pop them. In the other circle each kid picked a balloon. On the count of three I threw their balloons in the air and they had to try to knock their opponent’s balloon out of the circle using their lightsaber. You can do multiple rounds for this one.

Design a Jedi Ship

Put up a sign. Put out some LEGO. Have kids show off their creations at the end of the program. Easy peasy. Shout out to Kary who shared this idea with me!

Star Wars Scavenger Hunt

In the children’s area I also put out the scavenger hunt I used last year.  You can find the printable template in my other post. I kept this out all week next to our May the 4th Be With You book display to promote the program.

Other ideas I didn’t do but am saving for next year are a Stormtrooper egg relay race (just Google it), a Force experiment, and a Jedi Mind test (put a bunch of objects out, have kids try to memorize them, cover them up, and see which ones they remember).

Happy Star Wars Day, everyone!

10 thoughts on “May the 4th Be With You 2017: Star Wars Library Program

  1. A little time consuming but easy on the budget: We used poster board and paper towel rolls. We are always collecting toilet and paper towel rolls so we had plenty of those and cut poster boards into thirds. We pre-rolled the posters for the kids because it proved to be a little tricky. Then we printed off a lightsaber handle template that I found here: and taped them to the rolls. Then they just slide their posterboard into their “handles” and taped it into place and they’re done!

    1. Thanks for sharing this idea! I’ll add it to my list to try out next year.

  2. Awesome!! I especially love the name generator.

    Have you heard of the 501st Legion? We just had them come in last night (it was as close to Star Wars Day as we could book them) and it was great! The kids were in awe the entire time. Unfortunately, that meant that our Star Wars Night activities (including an awesome scavenger hunt) were a little ignored. I think if we have them again, I would like to do a longer block of time and have the kids do Star Wars activities first, then hang out with the 501st’ers.

    501st Canadian chapter:

    1. I have heard of them, but I’ve never gotten around to inviting them. I guess I always assume they’d be booked up way far in advance. Maybe next year if I’m more on top of things I’ll invite them! I’m sure they would be a total hit. Thanks for the reminder 🙂

  3. I’ve done light saber keychains for a couple of years now and they are a big hit. You take neon colored straws and cut them in half. Then slide a paper clip in one end almost all the way in but leave some of the “u” sticking out. Add duct tape around that end to make the handle. The duct tape also covers part of the clip so it will stay inside the straw. You can add more duct tape for details and a key chain clip finishes it. They are great for using with your Lego figurines too : )

    1. Thanks so much for sharing this idea! My list of activities for next year keeps growing and growing 🙂

  4. I’m doing my practicum as a public librarian student and have been given the honor of developing programming for May the 4 this year, and I just found your site! I’m so inspired by the ideas you’ve posted! One of my ideas is to start with story time with Grogu. This might be good for very little ones. I also want to have participants make Yoda Soda (lime sherbet with Sprite poured over it). Thank you so much!!

    1. Love those ideas! There are so many new things you can do around the spin-offs now.

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