Title: Shadow Catchers
Author: Kirsty Murray
Illustrator: Karen Blair
Published: May 2023
Publisher: Allen and Unwin
Readership: Children (Picturebook)
I received a copy of Shadow Catchers from the publisher for review. All thoughts and opinions are my own.
A delightful picture book that celebrates the joy of young children trying to catch their shadows – from the creators of CBCA Honour Book When Billy was a Dog and Puddle Hunters.
Inside, outside, in our home and in our neighbourhood, shadows dance around us from morning through to night.
Our shadows are so tall, then small, then tall again in sunlight, lamplight and even in the moonlight.
A wonderful picture book about playfulness and the joy of light and movement.
Shadow Catchers by Kirsty Murray is a beautiful new release picturebook that follows two siblings as they explore light and shadows throughout the course of the day. As they experience different light sources, they see how their shadows (and the shadows they create) look and move differently.
It’s a joyful book of exploration and play that addresses the wonders of childhood, as well as the fears that some children have of shadows in the darkness. The language is beautiful, and there is excellent use of verbs. The watercolours accentuate the time of day – the brightness of midday in the sun to the warm yellows of lights at night time. I had a great time reading this.
This would be excellent to use in a classroom for:
A read-aloud and/or discussion around connections students make to the text
A mentor text that demonstrates the passage of time throughout the day
An introduction to light and shadows as part of a science or inquiry unit
Leading into a guided play session where students have time to experiment with creating shadows
A writer’s notebook lesson where students go outside and create shadows/shapes with their bodies – adults take photos that can then be turned into writing prompts or a class book
A read-aloud before creating shadow puppets, that students can then use to create their own stories