The whole world, as we experience it visually, comes to us through the mystic realm of color. – Hans Hofmann
Whether you live in America or Australia, whether you speak English or Arabic, the colors of the world are the same universally. Our cultures may have different meanings associated with various colors, and our languages may associate different words with each color. However, no matter what language we speak or what we believe in as individuals, a banana is always yellow; a strawberry always red; colors are seen the same no matter where you are in the world.
We recently had the pleasure of completing a color unit with the preschoolers. Teaching color is something that we can integrate in everything we do, for the rest of the school year. When we color with crayons and markers or paint with tempera or water colors, we can ask the children what color they are using. When children walk in the door, we can ask them what colors they are wearing. Color is such an amazing subject to work with and teach, especially to ESL students.
I started off our daily message asking the students, “Can you name these colors?”
Another activity we did was to put a drop of yellow paint and a drop of blue paint into a ziplock bag. We sealed the bag, played music, and had the children pass the bag around as the music played. The children were able to watch as yellow mixed with blue to create the color green. We also mixed blue and red to make purple, as well as red and yellow to make orange. The preschoolers interests seemed to be really peaked during this hands-on learning experience.
Finally, another favorite activity during colors week was to create a class rainbow. We separated crayons by colors into cups. labeled a rainbow with the color words in English, and students took turns coloring each color part of the rainbow.
We hung up our color work on the wall for the children to use as references to color throughout the remainder of the school year (and, of course, it makes for beautiful decoration in our classroom).