Home » Activities » Shadow Art for Kids

Shadow Art for Kids

Have fun outside making your own shadow art with kids! Kids can design any sort of shapes or images they’d like on the cardboard and parents or caregivers can help cut them out.

RELATED: Sidewalk Chalk Recipe

Shadow Art for Kids Activity

We love that there are so many possibilities with this activity! You can even do words, letters, shapes or plain cardboard images too.

Turtle Shadow Art

Our bookFun and Easy Crafting with Recycled Materials is bursting with cardboard crafts like this one. There is a whole chapter of cardboard crafts. But not only that, there are other recycled crafts for kids too – egg cartons, paper rolls, newspaper, popsicle sticks, jars and more!

Fun and Easy Crafting Book

Supplies Needed to Make Shadow Art


X-acto Knife (adults only to use)

Colored Cellophane


-Glue Stick

-Free Printable Templates (for the turtle and butterfly) – see the bottom of the post for instructions on how to receive the free printable templates.

Rainbow Shadow Art

Watch the Video Tutorial Here


How to Make Your Own Cardboard Shadow Art for Kids

1. Start by printing out the free turtle and butterfly templates. Instructions for getting the free printable turtle and butterfly template are at the bottom of the post. 

You can also draw your own designs! For the rainbow, we drew our own since we wanted it to be bigger than what our printer could fit.

Cut out the shapes or you can also cut out each individual pieces of the shapes to trace onto your cardboard.

Cut out Shadow Art Templates

2. Trace the shape onto the cardboard.

Trace Turtle Template Onto Cardboard

3. You should now have your design on the cardboard.

Kids can draw their own shapes or animals too!

Turtle Shape on Cardboard

4. Adults will now need to help using an X-acto knife to cut out the areas of the design. Make sure to place something underneath to protect your table while cutting.

Cut Out Inside Shapes

5. Cut out matching shapes from cellophane and tape to the back of your cardboard.

Tape Cellophane to Back of Cardboard

For the butterfly, we first taped the yellow on first, and then added the colors on top with a glue stick.

Cut out Cellophane

The glue stick won’t show marks when gluing the cellophane together, but if you use regular white glue you will see the glue marks when it dries.

Glue Butterfly Wing Pieces On

Here are the final shadow art cardboard designs we made:

Shadow Art for Kids Cardboard Shapes

6. Now go outside in the sun and see how your new designs create amazing shadow art on the sidewalk!

Rainbow Shadow Art Activity

We had a lot of fun making the butterfly fly as a shadow and pretending to make it fly. You could do birds or a kite too! There are so many options with this activity!

To get the templates, subscribe below and it will be delivered to your inbox as a free gift. Please make sure to check ALL folders for the confirmation email. 

More Outdoor Sidewalk Activities

See how to make your own sidewalk chalk paint!

Sidewalk Chalk Paint Recipe

Or try this puffy sidewalk paint. 

Fill Squeeze Bottles with Sidewalk Paint

Review icon

Share a Comment!

We LOVE hearing from you! Submit your question or comment here.

Your email address will not be published.
Required fields are marked *

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Scroll to Top