Friday, October 11, 2013

Perspectives: Shadows

“Wow, Now it is Big!”
Week of September 29th, 2013

Last week the children explored two different techniques to change the size of their shadow or the shadow of the plastic animal. I decided to build upon their learning by introducing them to a new technique to reinforce their discoveries with shadow sizes.
We began by tracing the object onto paper and then we placed it on the projector to compare its original size to the size of its shadow. They were adamant about finding the right object to experiment with; some wanted a dinosaur while another wanted to see what happened to their favorite dog stuffed animal. Therefore we explore multiple objects and observed multiple outcomes.
The children practiced their fine-motor skills by tracing the object onto the paper that was taped onto the wall as well as manipulating the object on the projector screen. At one point, the children began to use their imagination and would act out the animal that was casting a shadow on the wall.  They would roar and hop and stomp.
During our exploration, I began to wonder if they children were noticing how the shadows became really dark the closer the object was to the wall, while objects that were closer to the projector cast light shadows. I would ask them what color they thought their shadow or the shadow of the object was. Some would say, “Black” while another said that it was, “blue.”
 I would like to see how they will explore what happens when colorful transparent objects are placed onto the projector alongside the solid objects that create shadows. I want to provide the children with an opportunity to solve the questions: Why do some objects produce shadows while others do not? And why are some shadows darker than others?

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