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The Shadowbox Theatre

When the sun shines, shadows can be seen on the ground or on a wall, creating an outline of any object blocking the light. Shadows are so common that you probably do not pay much attention to them. However, there is much to discover if you observe shadows and experiment with making your own. A fun way to learn about shadows is by using a shadowbox theatre and shadow puppets.

From the puppet menu, select and click on a famous scientist. By clicking on the red lines in the box above, you can move the puppet.

In a shadowbox theatre, the light is coming from behind the screen. By placing a puppet between the light and the screen, the shadow of the puppet is cast on the screen. How does moving the puppet closer to or further from the screen change the shadow?

Shadowbox theatres were very popular in Europe during the 1800s and early 1900s. They are still popular on the Indonesian Islands of Bali and Java where very elaborate shadow puppet shows are performed. You can learn how to make your own shadowbox theatre at our Shadowbox Theatre activity site.

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