I need to make a confession: my boys watch a LOT of television. Mickey Mouse Clubhouse, Chuggington, Thomas and Friends, etc. are constantly on repeat. Thankfully, children’s programming for their age has become more educational than it was 30+ years ago. And they also like to play with their toys, so I don’t feel too guilty.
Besides shapes and numbers and letters, P has learned all primary and secondary colors from watching some of these shows. I try to reiterate what he’s learned by either talking to him about it or using different activities. This week’s activity theme features colors!
First up was a combo craft and sensory activity.
Colored Rice Activity Bin
- Rice (white works best, but brown will suffice)
- Food coloring
- Zip top bags
- Wax or parchment paper
- Sensory bin materials (clear bin, scoops, etc.)
First we decided which colors to use, then we added a few drops of food coloring in each bag (one color per bag). Then we added in a couple tablespoons of vinegar. Zip up the bags and squish the liquids around to combine.
Add some scoops of plain, uncooked rice to each bag. Zip up the top and let the little ones squish them to combine the rice with the colored vinegar mixture.
Do this for each color, making sure the rice is completely covered. Then pour each bag of rice out onto a sheet of wax paper to dry. This will take approximately one hour to dry completely before you can use.
Once dried, I bagged it up by color until we were ready to use!
When you are ready to play, pour the rice into a bin with your scooping and pouring items. We started with them as individual colors (which didn’t last long, of course). P loved letting the rice run through his fingers and pouring it through a funnel.
The second activity was more of a science activity.
- Six (6) plastic (disposable) cups – clear
- Paper towels
- Food coloring in red, blue, and yellow
Set up your cups in a circle. In three cups, add a quarter cup of water a several drops of food coloring. Make sure you have your primary colors in every other cup because the cups in between will become the secondary colors as they mix through the paper towels.
It will go: blue water, empty cup (becomes purple), red water, empty cup (becomes orange), yellow water, empty cup (becomes green). Then you are back to the blue cup.
Roll up several paper towels lengthwise; do this six times. Put one end of each paper towel roll in each cup and “fold” the other end into the cup next to it. Each cup will have two paper towel roll ends in it.
After a while, you’ll notice the colors creeping up the paper towels and creating the secondary colors in the empty cups.
Such a fun activity to talk about colors and secondary colors made from primary colors!
Other color-themed activities
- Reading: Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What Do You See?
- Snack: Rainbows out of fruit
- Color sorting: sort Fruit Loops into piles of colors (I tried this with P, but he just wanted to eat them)
- Craft: Stringing Fruit Loops onto a string to make a necklace
What are some ways you teach your kids about colors?