Shadow - Art & Science Lesson

Kids will enjoy exploring the shadow of the sun with this fun, hands on, Sun Shadow Art and Science Lesson for Preschool, Kindergarten, 1st grade, 2nd grade, and 3rd grade kids. Great for year round on a sunny day!
Sun Shadows Art & Science Lesson - this is such a fun, colorful kids activities that kids will love (science, preschool, kindergarten, 1st grade, 2nd grade, 3rd grade)

There are few things  more exciting than discovering the beautiful patterns hidden in our world. One day my daughter discovered that the angle of the sun made a special display in our bedroom, but it only lasted a few minutes. The changes in the way the sun effects our world is one of the key things you should be studying in science.

Today's project is accessible to preschoolers, but it would be appropriate  for elementary and secondary students as well. Here's how to do the basic project.


explore sun shadows with this fun kids activities


  • Large sheets of paper
  • Paint
  • Brushes
  • An object to form the shadow
  • A sunny day

First thing in the morning 

Set your object on the paper, and observe the shadow. Use paint to color in the shadow. 

Two hours later
Make sure your object is in the same place, and paint the new shadow. Repeat this process all day.

When the paint is dry
Discuss your painting. How did the length of the shadows change? Why? How did their position change? Why would those changes happen?

Shadow Extension Activities

  1. Use a protractor to measure the angle change between each shadow. 
  2. Repeat at different times of year, and compare the results.
  3. Use your data and your latitude to calculate the speed of the rotation of the earth.

Science Activities for Kids

Christy McGuire is a former AP physics teacher, and current mother of 4. She and her children enjoy exploring science and math together. Head over to Thriving STEM to find more science, technology, engineering and math ideas to use with your kids.  Follow along on FacebookInstagramPinterest, and Twitter.

Beth Gorden
Beth Gorden

Beth Gorden is a homeschooling mother of six who strives to enjoy every moment with her kids through hands-on learning, crafts, new experiences, and lots of playing together. Beth is also the creator and author of 123 Homeschool 4 Me where she shares 1000+ free printables, creative homeschool lessons, crafts, and other fun ideas to help preschool and homeschooling families have fun while learning and exploring together.