Transparent Tarp

8 February 2012 · 8 comments

in Play Resources

I have a self-confessed fondness for tarp and its multitude of uses outside. In particular I adore transparent tarp. Living in the NE Scotland, there are many grey days all year round. So transparent tarp allows the maximum of light to enter into the space underneath.

Last week I was visiting Queen’s Cross Nursery in Aberdeen and had put up the transparent tarp. I was slightly disappointed that it wasn’t raining as this is another cool thing about transparent tarp… you can watch the rain running down into pools of water and eventually tip over the edge which is always an exciting moment.

I had thought about giving the children whiteboard pens to draw on the tarp before we hoisted it up, but it was a bit of an afterthought – instead, the children drew on the transparent umbrellas.

As the children were interested in sea creatures and had been finding out about them following on from a pirate focus, one member of staff thought it might be interesting to create an “aquarium”. She threw some  creatures onto the transparent tarp.

And this is what you saw when looking at them from underneath…

The effect is surprisingly sea-like! However, we were in for a better surprise when we took photos. Suddenly, the creatures faded into shadows! Wow!

We also found that if you photo the creatures with the trees as a backdrop, suddenly it looks like seaweed and the creases of the tarp look like ripples of water.

I love the joy of accidental discoveries. Many thanks to Michelle and her sea creatures 🙂

Because in many ways this transparent tarp is like a natural outdoor light table, I’m delighted to be able to add this post to Teach Pre-schools Light Table link up below! Yay!

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{ 6 comments… read them below or add one }

Kierna C February 8, 2012 at 17:59

Wow, Juliet love these photos & the transparent tarp is now top of my list from Cosy! What a fab idea & thanks for sharing,there are so many possibilities for use like this, Kierna


Scott February 8, 2012 at 18:11

What a cool idea, Juliet. I think it’s great anytime we can see things from a different perspective – and the tarp gives you opportunity to definitely do that.

I’m imagining the sun shining through and casting shadows on the ground underneath – tracing around shapes made on the ground – lots of cool things.

Thanks for triggering thinking of an entirely different sort.


jenny February 9, 2012 at 08:37

Now that is cool. I wonder where I could get my hands on one? And I love the idea of drawing on the transparent umbrellas. I’ll have to look out for some of those too!


Sherry and Donna February 9, 2012 at 12:00

Oooohahhhh Juliet … I’ve not seen transparent tarps here in Melbourne … What a cool idea. Now transparent umbrellas I reckon I can get my hands on … love, love, LOVE the ideas!
Donna 🙂 🙂


Juliet Robertson February 9, 2012 at 20:18

Thanks for all your ideas and suggestions and comments. It’s good when one idea erupts from another.


. February 9, 2012 at 21:15

Neat Idea! I love it! I’m with you as far a grey, dreary days are concerned. What a great way to engage the children’s imagination and set up the environment in a unique way!


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