The Sun shone for us in Belfast and Crossmaglen!

After a break we have resumed our project explorations and with great enthusiasm!

We have continued to explore the idea of TRACE and after a short recap of our last sessions before Christmas, we began a new exercise.. its one I try with adults when teaching drawing: to draw, to describe an object that is hidden from view, using only the sensation of touch.

This makes us really aware of our other senses beside seeing and can produce some  unusual results. First though, Mrs Carolan had suggested that the children use blindfolds

Whiteboard Screens
Some images captured using the screen capture tool.

and other children could have their object hidden in a bag, so they would put in their hand and carefully feel the shape.



Whiteboard Screens
More wonderful drawings made by the children using their sense of touch.

Then the children made drawings by looking at the object – then they compared both their drawings and we spoke about what they thought the object was, before they could actually see it see it; this was interesting as they used their imaginations.

We began to think about how else we could trace a shape and so discussed the idea of shadow shapes: I showed the children two photographs I had taken and posted on the whiteboard:

I created a shadow shape using a light source..
I created a shadow shape using a light source..
shadow 2
Look at how my shadow has changed, because I moved my hand closer to the light…..


Mrs carolan had organized a number of torches for the children to try and capture the shape of a shadow. this was very tricky as it meant TEAM work!

One child holding the torch and another child holding the object, to see how they could position each to create and capture the shadow, by tracing round its edge.



Whiteboard Screens
Another screen capture of the children’s drawings.

So with the creation of a solid dark shape, I introduced the word ‘SILHOUETTE’, which is made by tracing the outline of an object and filling the middle, so it is a solid shape (usually black). Lots of shadows were created using torch light or the light from an overhead projector and the children had a go at tracing the outline and filling the solid shape in, so they had a silhouette!

Whiteboard Screens
Using torch light to create shadow shapes



During the morning break, we noticed that the sun was shining outside…. I suggested that the children look out for shadows shapes in the playground.

I was thrilled when the children returned to show me how they had taken a roll of paper outside to record the shadows they made! Look at these shapes of Caitlin’s long shadow and a shadow created by hunching down low. What great initiative!

We continued to explore shadow and silhouettes using the natural resource of the sunlight flooding in the classroom – due to the quick thinking of Mrs Carolan! And she was right, if we did not act quickly, the sun would go in and we would have no shadow!

Look at how Mrs Carolan and the children lined up to see their shadows.....
Look at how Mrs Carolan and the children lined up to see their shadows…..


All sorts of shapes and sizes of shadow!
All sorts of shapes and sizes of shadow!
Caitlin stood to create a REALLY long shadow
Caitlin stood to create a REALLY long shadow


Caitlin's very long shadow
Caitlin’s very long shadow

shadow 5


Look at the other shadow shapes, created by crouching!
Look at the other shadow shapes, created by crouching!
Whiteboard Screens
Shadows created by the sun on the children’s desks!

It felt really good to be spontaneous!

Some of the last shapes recorded were by Riordain and Finn., who with the help

of Catherine the assistant, made shapes with their hands to create shadow and drew round the shadow shape.

Whiteboard Screens
Some of the last drawings, captured on screen

The children showed me the result and I said it looked like a monster shape! They said they thought it was a bunny and then named it Sam!

We look forward to our collaborations next week when I will visit the school in person! I promised to bring down a drawing that I made recently and that I had shown the children on the whiteboard – it is of the silhouettes of tree tops. When I am out running I like to take in the landscape and the sky and this drawing was made remembering this.

I called the drawing 'Tree Sky'. It was made using charcoal.
I called the drawing ‘Tree Sky’. It was made using charcoal.



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