Only the Shadow Knows! – The Science of Shadow Puppetry

E&I Program: 
Grade level : 
6 to 8

Students will learn how light interacts with matter through exploration of shadow puppets.  Students, first, create puppets and perform a shadow play, in order to discover first-hand what differentiates opaque, translucent, and transparent materials. They then investigate how light is affected by the intensity and position of light in relation to both the object and the surface on which a shadow is cast. Then, students demonstrate diffraction, reflection, and refraction in the lab. Finally, students will explore the interconnectedness of their own stories with those of ancient cultures in the study of shadow puppets.