Friday, July 29, 2011

Sun Prints

After we talked about why we need the sun, what the sun is, and how far away it is, I  also wanted to touch on protecting our bodies from the sun. I made sure to point out to my son that a little sunshine is a good thing! I didn’t want him to be scared of the sun, but I wanted to illustrate for him that too much sun can be dangerous. Sort of like cookies, & vitamins, & toilet paper....We seem to be having this conversation a lot lately.


For this little activity you’ll need:

2 pieces of black construction paper
Some uniquely shaped objects
A sunny day
And a tray is helpful


Let you child position their collection of objects on a piece of construction paper on the tray.


Take it outside and leave it in a sunny spot.
Have your child hypothesize about what effect the sun will have on it.


After a few hours (or the next day, if you’re forgetful like us) bring the tray in and let your child remove the objects and observe what happened to the paper. It’s a good idea to have an extra sheet of construction paper handy to act as a reference as to what your paper looked like beforehand.


We left our paper outside from 1:30pm until sundown and as you can see the results were plenty noticeable. There is special Sun Art Paper that gives more dramatic and detailed results but for our purposes construction paper worked well and is much cheaper.

We concluded this experiment by talking about how the sun “hurt” the paper by fading it and how the toys protected the paper underneath them. In this 100+ degree heat it also seemed like the perfect time to talk about why we wear swimshirts, hats, and sunblock to protect our skin from the sun when we’re going to be outside for a long time.

And I'll bet with some particularly placed items, you could also use this same method to make some unique summertime art! We might have to try that another day.

Stay tuned!
Next week I’ll be posting a couple of space crafts and some space-themed sensory play.

I'm sharing this post over at:
Tot School 


  1. we did this many years ago when I taught preschool, totally forgot about it! What fun :D

  2. I didnt realize it would work so well with just black paper! Great idea!

  3. I love that you used this to talk about protecting our bodies from the sun. I featured your post at the Living Montessori Now Facebook page at

  4. Check my giveaway


  5. Thanks for sharing this idea. I've been thinking about springing for the special paper but simply can't afford to do so right now. This will work just as well.


Thanks for your comments!

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