Science and Shadow Play for Kids

science and shadow playFrom this day on, days in the Northern Hemisphere will be getting shorter, so take advantage of the light with some science shadow play for kids.


Usually lots of daylight means days are warm as well, so take the shadow play outside. Of course, there won’t be any shadows at noon, or what would be noon if your area is on daylight saving time. Yesterday afternoon, our shadows were so long we looked like giants! They stretched across the whole driveway.

science and shadow play

Playing with their own shadows is lots of fun. Kids discover they can make their shadows move, bend, stretch, shrink, and do other tricks by moving bodies in certain ways. When walking along the sidewalk, shadows will bend so it looks like bodies are bending.

science and shadow playEveryday objects will create all sorts of strange shapes, like this table and chairs. Does the shadow look like the object? What’s changed? These chairs and the round top of the table look like they are tipping.

Besides playing with their own shadows, kids can go for a walk just to see different shadows.

science and shadow playWe can even play games with shadows. Kids can take some toys outside and check out their shadows. We can cover our eyes and try to guess what something is just from its shadow. This ball doesn’t look so very round anymore. Without seeing the ball, it would be hard to figure out that’s what it is.

To extend play, we can give kids some chalk and have them draw the around the edge of the shadow of an object. After awhile they can check what they have drawn and check the changes.

Sometimes, parents and caregivers are quite intimidated when they think about doing science with kids. But so many of children’s activities are discovery, exploration, and experimentation. Their play is very scientific. Although shadows seem quite magical, kids are learning basic science when they watch and play. For a play-of-the-day, how about some shadow play for kids?

The blog always has more ways to play.

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