What are the Northern Lights?
The Aurora are colorful, whispy, moving curtains of light that occur in the night sky surrounding one the Earth's poles. This light moves around in and changes color in a dazzling dance of light.
The Sun is very active, always releasing stuff out into space (the solar wind). Every once in a while it can suddenly eject material— a million tons of it—into space. Some of this comes towards the Earth and hits our atmosphere. The material (small particles) interacts with the Earth's outer atmosphere, causing the gas in the atmosphere to release light. This light appears in many different colors (green, blue, and red), and we call it the aurorae.
In the north they are called aurora borealis, or northern lights. In the south they are called aurora australis, or southern lights.