Autumn is ablaze with colors. Red, orange, yellow, gold and even green. How do children learn colors? They learn colors the same way they learn anything else, by exposure and manipulation. Bev Boz has a quote on her site; ""If it hasn't been in the Hand... and the Body... it can't be in the Brain!" Children learn through all their senses. The challenge for teachers is how to teach to the senses, how to involve the "whole" child in the learning process, especially with something so abstract as color.
The first step to teaching color is to expose children to it. Point out the changing leaves. The yellow ones, the red ones. Take two or three and say look I think these are different, but how? They may point out that some leaves are big and some are small. Now you point out that they are also different colors. One is red, one is yellow and one is still green.
Ask your child in the morning or the night before what color they would like to wear. Would they like to wear white or pink socks? Would they like to wear their favorite blue shirt or the black one? Slowly the children will come to recognize and be able to name the different colors. Perhaps just one at first. Soon they will start to remember the different names for the colors.
Here at Ivy League-West we start by painting with red, then blue, then yellow, then we mix the colors to see what new colors we can make. We also play yummy juice bars. What? You've never heard of yummy juice bars? Well, I'll tell you, but you must know that if you introduce this game you will be playing it over and over again...right after you read their favorite book for the millionth time.
Different color construction paper
Cut out 2 popsicle forms of each color and glue them together leaving a portion of the bottom open so that you can insert a popsicle stick into the cut outs. Draw a star (or use a star sticker) on one of the popsicle sticks. Like so:
Now to the tune of Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star, you sing the following:
Can you find the little star hiding inside my yummy juice bar?
Think real hard and then decide, which flavor is it hiding inside?
Can you find the little star, hiding inside my yummy juice bar?
At first the child may just point at one. You say "ooh you want the pink one." (or whatever color he pointed to) and then you say, "The pink one can be strawberry or watermelon." Then you slowly pull out the stick and see if it has the star. If it does, you congratulate the child for finding the star. Then you put that stick into a another color and continue the game.
Soon the child will be naming the colors and their flavors!!