Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Experiment: Shadows

Shadows are a great topic to play with during a study of the moon. The moon doesn't generate it's own light but reflects that of the sun. An eclipse is nothing more than a shadow, but unless you are witnessing an eclipse with a preschooler, I'd suggest waiting on discussing eclipses.

Shadows on the other are great fun at this age. Since the sun is still setting early, shadow play can easily take place even before supper!

Grab some construction paper and copier paper and cut out shapes. Glue or tape them on to craft sticks or straws. Using a flash light, cast shadows on the wall by putting the paper shapes between the wall and the flashlight.

Do the two kinds of paper cast the same kind of shadow? The copier paper is translucent - which is a fancy science word for letting a bit of light through. The construction paper is opaque - which is a fancy science work for not letting any light through.

How do you make the shadows bigger or smaller? What other objects can you cast shadows with? Can you make shapes with your hands or bodies?

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