home > colour
under5s - Colour
Learning about Colour

Early in the Foundation stage, it is important that children begin to be able to name and match colours. Learning about colours can be great fun, and there are lots of different activities you can do to encourage these skills. 

Learning about colour is an important area of Mathematical Development - as children learn to match colours and recognise colour patterns. Here are some ideas to start you off on a path of coloured discoveries.

Visit the Library

The library is the place to borrow books about colour, there are factual books grouping items in sets of colours, and story books about blue balloons, or different coloured animals - if you are unsure which ones to choose the children's librarian can often point out some great books.

Play a game

Do you remember "I spy with my little eye something beginning with the letter...", well this can be really tricky until children are aware of their letter sounds, but why not simplify the game and "I spy with my little eye, something the colour of..." and the children can guess what you are looking at that is purple, and then when it is their turn you might be hunting for something pink. The possibilities are endless... what about spying something stripy, dotty, hard or soft too.

Offer Choices

It is really important to use colour language yourself, so the children can understand the colour names within context... can you make the blue train go through the tunnel next ? Shall we have green peas or yellow sweetcorn for tea ? Do you want to wear your red jumper or your blue one today ? Can you sort them so that you have all the same colour?

If you are lucky enough to have coloured plates and cups, then you could encourage the children to choose the colour plate they have lunch on, and find a cup and a bowl that matches, or perhaps you can sort a toy by colour?

Colours are everywhere

Colours are everywhere and it is really important to make the most of the great outdoors, whatever the weather, and it can be a real adventure going for a local colour walk !

Pick a colour, yellow for example and set up hunting for it as you go... can you spot yellow cars, yellow flowers, a yellow gate, a yellow front door or even a yellow digger ! Then next week you can do the same trip, looking out for things that are red!

Messy Ideas...
  • Add a few drops of food colouring to the bath water, or a tub of water for messy play, and have a bath in the yellow waters.
  • Freeze coloured water in a variety of containers and watch what happens when it melts, and the colours mix together
  • Make a batch of homemade white playdough, divide it into lumps and add a few drops of colouring with the children... what happens, what colour does it become, what if you mix colours ?
  • Paint with shades of the same colour, dark red, light red, pink (add white to lighten) and see what the children can create... then next time use a different colour.
  • Mix colours... paint one hand red and the other blue, make a handprint picture... then see what happens if the child rubs his/her hands together.
  • Go out in the rain, splashing in puddles and hunting for a rainbow or for a dryer option... paint a rainbow, name the colours and sing the song !
Have a colour day

Encourage your child to choose a colour and have a themed day. 

Both of you could wear orange, make orange playdough, paint an orange picture, go for an orange walk to visit the shop and buy some oranges and then you could come home and have an orange lunch with apricots, carrots, red leicester cheese and make an orange jelly for pudding !

Helen Renouf

under5s - colour
home > colour