Building & Tracing Shadows

Here’s a fun activity to encourage your child to experiment with (and learn about!) light and shadows. With just a few building blocks, crayons, and some paper, kids can create and trace an endless variety of shadows and shapes. Plus, by allowing them to explore and experiment on their own, children can discover new and exciting things about the shifting nature of shadows.


  • Building blocks or other stackable toys
  • Large sheets of paper
  • Crayons
  • Flashlight (optional)


  1. In front of a large window or other light source*, lay a blank sheet of paper.
  2. Have your child stack their blocks to make different shapes, so that the shadow is cast on the paper.
  3. Give them crayons to trace the shadow on the paper.
  4. Move the blocks around to create new shapes and shadows, and repeat!

*If it’s a rainy day or there’s not enough light, feel free to use a flashlight to make the shadows.