Thursday, February 3, 2011

Easy Silhouettes

Every year I do silhouettes of my students during the first week of February.  It continues our discussion of shadows after Groundhog Day is over.  Every year I also get lots of questions about how I make them.  Some folks think I'm really talented... I laugh!  Anyway, today I'm gonna share the easy way to make a gorgeous silhouette without any talent.

All you need is an overhead projector, black and white 12X18 paper and a pencil. I use a little sticky tack to hold the paper on the wall so they are easy to remove and add the next one.

I sit the overhead projector on a table and cast the light on the wall.  I sit a small chair in the light for a child to sit on.  After the child's is sitting I adjust the paper so the child's silhouette is on it.  Adjusting the paper is much easier than adjusting the child.  Encourage the child to not look into the light. I usually give them a focal point in front of them to keep focused on during the procedure.

Next just trace around the outline of the head getting as much of the detail as possible.  Eyelashes and little whisps of hair are pretty easy to trace at this point.  I usually also steady the child's head with my left hand because it is very difficult for them not to lean forward. 

After tracing I cut them out and use glue sticks to attach them to the white paper.  Note: put glue on the side you drew the silhouette on and you will have a clean silhouette as a finished product.

Here are a few more.  I put these up on the wall and then we all try to figure out who is who.  The children are amazing at this.  They recognize their friends easily. We also refer back to the silhouettes during president's week later in February.  I'll tell you all about that in another post later this month.  

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