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Making shadow sidewalk chalk art is a fun way to get kids outside learning and flexing their creative muscles while having fun creating art outdoors.

Shadow art outdoor science is a hands-on STEAM activity that will help children learn about shadow science and that shadows are formed when an object blocks light.


  • A sunny day
  • An open space with no shadows and no clouds overhead. Driveways, parking lots, and playgrounds work well.
  • Recycled chalk paint (making recycled chalk paint is another great way for kids to explore science)
  • Sidewalk chalk
  • Paintbrushes
  • Camera (optional)


  • Create shadows outside using the sun as the source of light. Invite children to experiment and play around with creating different types of shadows outside. Encourage kids to use their bodies and other objects such as leaves, toys, bikes, etc. to block the sunlight and create shadows on the ground.
  • Trace shadows. Use sidewalk chalk to trace shadows in various positions. Trace the shadows of human bodies, animal bodies, and objects to make shadow sidewalk art. Trees, flowers, and children’s toys are a few more fun shadow sidewalk art ideas you can try.
  • Use recycled chalk paint, sidewalk chalk paint, or sidewalk chalk to ‘fill in’ or ‘colour’ your shadows to create your shadow sidewalk chalk art.
  • Sidewalk chalk art doesn’t last long – make sure that you take pictures of your beautiful shadow art creations!

Spark Creative Learning!

Once children are finished painting shadow sidewalk chalk art, consider asking them a few questions to solidify the simple science concepts that they learned about:

  • How do shadows form?
  • How do shadows form outside?
  • What light source did we use to make shadows?
  • How did you block the light?
  • What happens when you block the light of the sun?
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