Colors are everywhere we look, and studying them is a fun way to explore both art and science. There’s no better way to learn about colors than by engaging in hands-on activities. Try the following projects with your kids.
- Make a rainbow sponge painting with a kitchen sponge and powdered tempera paint.
- Squirt red, blue and yellow paint into a gallon-sized plastic zipper bag. Seal the bag, and kids can press on the bag with their fingers or a cotton swab. As they make designs in the paint, the colors will blend, showing kids how the primary colors mix with one another.
- Play a color recognition game. Have children sit down. Name a color, and any child who is wearing that color may stand up. Repeat with different colors.
- Gather six clear cups, and fill three with water. Add yellow food coloring to the water in one cup, blue to another and red to the last one. In each of the empty cups, mix colored water from two of the other cups to discover how the primary colors blend.
- Decorate color wheels with paint, crayons or magazine pictures.
- Place a color matching game. Gather six colors of construction paper and spread them on the floor. Place colored stickers on the sides of a die; the colors of the stickers should correspond with the colors of the papers you gathered. Roll the die. Kids run to the paper that matches the color that was rolled.
- Place dots of two primary colors of tempera paint next to one another on a sheet of paper. Use a cotton swab to blend the colors together to see how they mix.
- Read books about color, such as White Rabbit’s Color Book by Alan Baker or Mouse Paint by Ellen Stoll Walsh.
- Make a colorful fruit salad and eat it. Consider using blueberries, strawberries, oranges, pineapple, grapes or kiwifruit.
- Do a colorful experiment with milk. Pour a shallow layer of milk into a dish. Add one drop each of green, blue, yellow and red food coloring to the dish. Dip a cotton swab in dish soap, then dip it in the milk dish to see a color explosion.
- Squirt a design on black construction paper with white glue. Sprinkle table salt on the glue, and shake off the excess. Drip watercolor paint or diluted food coloring onto the salt, and watch the colors travel along the salt lines.
Children will have fun doing lessons that highlight the colors that fill our world. Break out the paint, paper and glue to try your own versions of these colorful activities.