For the third day of our Rainbow Unit Study we learned that the rainbow colors make up the artist’s color wheel. We learned about primary colors, secondary colors, and complementary colors. We did some color mixing science and made some more yummy rainbow snacks. I also introduced a fun sensory tub today.
The Color Wheel
Primary Color-Red, yellow and blue. Primary colors are the 3 colors that can not be mixed or formed by any combination of other colors. All other colors are made from these 3 hues.
Secondary Colors-Green, orange and purple. These are the colors formed by mixing the primary colors.
Complementary colors- are any two colors which are directly opposite each other on the color wheel, such as red and green and red-purple and yellow-green.
Read: Take a Walk on a Rainbow by Miriam Moss
- What are the primary colors? Red, Yellow, Blue
- What are the secondary colors? Green, Orange, Purple
- How can you easily find complementary colors on the color wheel? The are opposite each other.
Painting A Color Wheel
Ask your child if he has ever heard the word “hypothesis” before. Explain that “hypothesis” is a special word that scientists use for “an idea that you can test.” A hypothesis is a kind of prediction. Explain that when someone makes a hypothesis, he or she uses clues to make a guess about something. Give some examples, such as, “If I drop this basketball on the floor, my hypothesis is that it will bounce.” Or, “When I see dark clouds in the sky, I have a hypothesis that it will rain soon.” Encourage your child to come up with a simple hypothesis or two. How can we test your hypothesis?
White ice cube tray
red, yellow, and blue food coloring
6 clear jars
- Fill the ice cube tray with water.
- Add 1 drop of one color to each section (make some red, yellow, and blue).
- Put it in the freezer at least an hour before the activity.
- Fill 6 clear cups with water. Add the red, yellow, and blue food coloring to the cups, one color per cup.
- Do you think we can make all the colors of the rainbow with only these three primary colors.
- Take out the ice cubes and let them know that they are the same 3 colors that are in the cups, the primary colors.
- What do you think will happen if we put a red ice cube into a yellow cup?
- Drop it in, then stir. Orange!
- What do you think will happen if we added blue to yellow? Green!
- Next try red and blue, which makes the purple.
- Then the children will want to see what would happen when we mixed all the colors and make brown.
- Line up the colors in order and said.. We made all the colors of the rainbow!
A Colorful Hypothesis
I used the Dinosaur Train A Colorful Hypothesis printout to help teach coloring mixing combinations to the children.
Kool-Aid (red, yellow, blue colors)
Ice cube tray
Rainbow Rice Garden Sensory Tub
- Measure out the rice (6 cups) and put it in a Ziploc bag with about 2 drops of food coloring and 2T of rubbing alcohol. (make red, orange, yellow, green, blue, and purple)
- Mix the rice in the bags to spread the color. Put them on pans to dry in the sun.
- Pour each color side by side in a sensory tub in the color of a rainbow.
- Add garden tools and gardening gloves and the fake flowers.
Sugar cookie dough
food coloring (all the colors of the rainbow)
- Divide dough into 6 portions. Tint each with a different food color (red, orange, yellow, green, blue, purple).
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F
- Roll dough into strips and form your rainbows but pushing the colors together.
- Bake cookies for 8 minutes or until lightly browned. Cool and store in an airtight container.
- Draw and color a rainbow on a piece of cardstock.
- The children color matched an assortment of stickers, felt, paper, feathers, pom poms, ribbon, and foam pieces onto the rainbow.