Early Science  /   Shadows  /   Week 3: Lesson 7

Week 3: Changing Shadows: Move the Light

Lesson 7

Children move a flashlight farther away, then closer to an object and notice how the size of the shadow changes.


Circle Time: Introduction

Shadow Review   
5 min. 

 

Two students look at concentrically circular outlines drawn on a piece of poster-board. One student points at the lines.

Children revisit the Week 2 learning activities: combined shadows, shadows growing larger as objects are moved closer to the light, and shadows changing shape as objects are rotated.

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Shadows Big & Small, Part 2   
5 min.

 

Students on the floor crowd around a piece of paper. One student stands, leaning over the paper and shining a flashlight on it while a teacher draws with a marker on the paper.

Children make predictions and test them out as they explore what happens to the shadow of an object when a light source is moved closer to the object, then farther away.

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Guided Small Group

Move the Light   
5 min.

 

A student holds a square piece of paper in front of a white wall, creating a square shadow on the wall.

As children move a flashlight up and down above a sticky note they are holding, they notice how the size of the shadow changes.

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Shoebox Shadow Theater   
5-10 min.

 

A shadow theatre made of a box lid and wax paper sits on a table. A teacher shines a flashlight on one side of the paper, and a student holds a small toy animal in front of the light, creating a shadow on the wax paper.

Children explore how to make the shadow of the object inside the shadow theater bigger, smaller, and clear enough to identify, by moving a flashlight closer and farther away.

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Learning Centers

Shoebox Shadow Theater   
5-15 min.

 

A shadow theatre made of a box lid and wax paper sits on a table. A teacher shines a flashlight on one side of the paper, and a student holds a small toy animal in front of the light, creating a shadow on the wax paper.

Shadow Center: Children place "mystery objects" in a shoebox shadow theater and shine a flashlight on the objects, casting a shadow on a wax paper "screen" for their partners to identify.

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Shadow Sculptures   
5-15 min.

 

A student holds a paper plate, on which sits a shadow sculpture, made of a piece of playdough with popsicle sticks and pipe cleaners sticking out of it. A lamp sits on the table next to her.

Art Center: Children create sculptures from play dough, craft sticks, pipe cleaners, feathers, etc. and shine a flashlight on them to examine their shadows.

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Books about Shadows   
5-15 min.

 

Two students are seated, each with a book open in her lap. One student looks down at her book and uses her fingers to make shapes.

Book Corner: Children browse through fiction and informational books about shadows.

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Shadow Play, Levels 1-11   
5-15 min. 

 

Shadow Play app screenshot.

Digital Learning Center: Children explore how a shadow is made by an object that blocks the light, and how the shadow changes when the object or the light moves.

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Cool Shadows Review   
5-15 min. 

 

Cool Shadows app screenshot.

Digital Learning Center: Children view and discuss Cool Shadows photos the class has taken.

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Shadow Puppets   
5 min. 

 

A teacher, seated on the floor, holds up and looks at an iPad, on which a video plays. Students are seated with their backs to the camera, watching the video.

Digital Learning Center: Children watch and discuss the video, Shadow Puppets.

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Circle Time: Wrap-Up

Shadow Play, Levels 10-11   
5-10 min. 

 

Shadow Play app screenshot.

Children explore how a shadow is made by an object that blocks the light, and how the shadow changes when the light is moved closer to or farther from the object.

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Shadows Big & Small, Part 2   
5 min.

 

Students on the floor crowd around a piece of paper. One student stands, leaning over the paper and shining a flashlight on it while a teacher draws with a marker on the paper.

Children discuss and demonstrate two different ways to make a shadow larger: by moving the object closer to the light or by moving the light closer to the object.

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