Colors in the Preschool Classroom

Colors in the Preschool Classroom

Teaching color early-on in a child's learning helps them to more easily comprehend the world they live in. In preparing these color lessons I realized that while learning all the colors is something that people should know, learning the foundational and basic colors was the most appropriate start for my students. I paid close attention to what my students were most interested in and asked them questions about their favorite toys and objects to better understand what colors they were thinking of most often. From there I picked one color for them to learn each week for 6 weeks. We started with red, then blue, yellow, orange, green and finally purple. So far we have made our way through red and blue. We did so much learning over the past few weeks and at the end of this blog I will give you a list of some of the books we used to learn about different colors.


Young students love books, and many of my lessons are started just from students reading a book and the questions they come up with afterward. For my color lessons I used books and songs that focused on the color of the week to help focus my students. Of course preschool aged children can get distracted easily so it is important that when teaching a lesson the complementary materials reinforce that lesson to my students. That way, even if some of my students are distracted with the book they are reading or the art they are creating, if those activities are designed around the central lesson of the week, a great deal of learning will occur. This sort of complementary learning is a huge part of my teaching process at Honey Bear Preschool, and in my experience, it is one of the best ways to keep students engaged throughout the learning process.


Our First Week’s Color: Red

Do you know what’s red? A fire truck is red. I’m not sure what it is about fire trucks that gets my students so excited, but it is one of their favorite things to play with. Once they found out that red was the color of fire engines they were super ecstatic to learn about this color. Throughout the week we did a number of different activities that helped reinforce what the color red is. One of those activities was a song about fire engines, “Here Comes the Firetruck” by Super Simple. Singing is a great way to boost a child’s confidence and when we have a room full of excited and encouraging students no one is hesitant to really express themselves. I strive to make my classroom a fun and welcoming experience for all my students and seeing them interact, encourage, and support one another is a beautiful thing to experience.




Another one of the activities for our red week was firefighter dress up. My students got to dress up in red fighter outfits and pretend they were the heroes that so many people look up to. Playing dress-up is a form of imaginative play that not only improves a child's creativity, but their social skills as well. While “red” was the focus of the week, by introducing different activities where the color was emphasized but not the main focus, my students were able to reinforce the color while also improving a number of other skills. Throughout the week we also made red play-dough and red flubber. Playing with malleable materials like this are great for improving fine motor skills and coordination, as well as providing students with an easy, mess free way to express themselves through creation.


The Second Week of Colors: Blue

To learn about the color blue, we started out with a reading of the Sesame Street book titled “The Monster at the End of this Book”, by Jon Stone. This story follows Grover who, after reading the title of the book, asks the reader not to finish it in fear of the monster at the end. As the story progresses Grover becomes more and more frightened. As you turn the final page there is a twist and the students learn that the monster that Grover was fearful of the whole time was in fact himself. This book was an instant classic when released and is still beloved by my student today, and the bright blue color of Grover was a perfect reason to use this timeless book as our introduction to blue week.




My students loved hearing the story and were surprised at the twist at the end of the book. When I reread the book to them it allowed my students to focus on different elements of the book such as the book's themes, as well as the vocabulary used. As with the firetruck during our red week, Grover the blue monster helped focus the class while at the same time introducing them to new and exciting things to learn about.


We also made a mess with blue Oobleck, it’s a combination of cornstarch and water, with some food coloring as well. It is one of the best open-ended materials that students can play with and my class loved making a mess with it! Open-ended materials are great learning tools for young students as they promote creativity, free thinking, and experimentation. If you would like to read more about my blog on Open-Ended materials and their benefits for preschool students click here.


Conclusion

I would love to tell you all about what we have done each week but I wanted to keep this blog relatively short so I’ll stick to only two. Throughout the past few weeks I have seen your children grow and learn in leaps and bounds. Dedicating a whole week to each color gave my students the necessary time to not only learn their colors but build confidence in what they have learned as well. By the end of the 5 weeks, each student went home with a book about the colors they had learned and each page of the book showed a color we worked on, and the objects we interacted with. This really helped them feel immersed in the lessons and reinforced all that they had learned. I also had each of them take a picture in a colored scarf to remember what color they learned during that week. Every time they come into class on Monday they ask “What color is it this week?” and it fills me with so much joy to see the kids showing all this interest in exploring and learning about colors. That's all I’ve got for now, I can’t wait to share what my classroom is going to be learning next, thanks so much for reading!


Some of the book we used to learn colors:

  1. Little Llama Red Pajama by Anna Dewdney

  2. Yellow Coptor by Kersten Hamilton

  3. Green Little Peas by Keith Baker

  4. The Little Blue Truck Series by Alice Schertle

  5. The Day the Crayons Quit by Drew Daywalt

  6. It looks Like Spilled Milk by Charles G. Shaw

  7. Their is a Monster in Your Book by Tom Fletcher


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