Mini Monets and Mommies: Let's Start Color Mixing! Kids' Art Activity

Sunday, April 10, 2016

Let's Start Color Mixing! Kids' Art Activity

Color mixing. It’s one of the easiest kids’ art activities out there. That said, it’s also one of the best when it comes to grabbing your child’s natural sense of curiosity and helping her to explore.

Kids' art

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Back when I used to teach children’s art classes, we only used the primary colors (and white). If the kids were making paper mache animals and wanted to paint an orange lion’s mane they had to mix yellow and red (and figure out how to get the orange color that they wanted by experimenting with different amounts of paint).

One of the biggest challenges of only using the primaries was actually getting the kids to mix the colors. They were all so used to having a rainbow of paints presented to them that they froze when only given a mere three or four. After some heavy encouragement, they would make the leap into mixing the colors. Within a few minutes, they were making discoveries and figuring out how to make their own new hues.

So, how can you start a color mixing activity at home? I always like to open the art-making with a few new vocabulary words. Depending on your child’s age she may or may not know the color words. If she doesn’t give her the words for blue, red and yellow – pointing to each color as you pour it out of the bottle. Next, add the words primary (blue, red and yellow) and secondary (orange, green and purple).
Painted colors

Keep in mind, you don’t always have to do a strict primary to secondary color-mixing lesson. You can use whatever colors your child feels like playing with. The idea here is for her to explore, experimenting with making new colors. Your child also doesn’t have to use a brush. She can use a brush. But, she can also use a sponge, cotton balls or her own hands.

To begin the color-mixing, here’s what you’ll need:

·        Tempera paint in at least three colors (you can also add white to lighten any color)

·        White paper

·        A palette (I like to use a sheet of wax paper – it’s simple, cost-effective and keeps the mess off of the table)

·        Optional: Paintbrushes, sponges, other painting tools

Here’s what to do:

1. Pour the paint onto the palette.
Kids' activities

2. Give your child a blank piece of paper.

3. Sit back and let your child mix away!
Process art
 
Color Mix
 

Use several sheets of paper, inviting your child to make as many different colors and designs as she can. As she’s working, ask her to name the colors. You can go completely realistic and stick to orange, purple, green, etc. Or, you can ask her to make up imaginatively silly names (such as ‘monstrous ghoulish green grey’).
Art projects

When your child feels comfortable mixing colors, start introducing this activity as part of the regular painting process. Whether she’s creating a spring tree, making a rainbow or painting a sculpture, she can mix up her own batch of colors – instead of asking you to buy them!

Are you looking for more artsy activities? Follow my Pinterest board for ideas.
Follow Mini Monets and Mommies's board Process Art for Kids on Pinterest.

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