Activities and Tips on Teaching Colors

Colors are among the most difficult and abstract concepts for young children to learn. Teaching colors requires a lot of patience and the understanding that not all children will learn these concepts at the same pace. However, most preschool children do demonstrate an understanding of colors. Below are some tips on teaching colors.

1. Begin with your child’s favorite color: Pay attention to your child’s color preferences. If you notice that your child is drawn to a certain color, start teaching him or her this particular color.

2. Color of the week: Pick one color at a time and talk about it for one week. Once you think your child demonstrates understanding of this particular color, move on to the next color.

3. Teach one concept at a time: When teaching colors, focus on the concept of color only during your activity to avoid confusion. For example, if you play with a big blue ball, avoid using the concept big but rather focus on the blue color. The child needs to understand that you are referring to the color, not the size, shape, or name of the object or the number of objects.

4. Use familiar objects and vocabulary. When teaching colors, use familiar objects that your child already understands and avoid introducing new vocabulary to avoid confusion. The child might confuse the concept of color with any new vocabulary.

5. Practice every day.

Some fun activities for teaching and practicing colors:

1. Decorate one room of the house in the color of the week. For example, if you are working on the color blue, decorate a room with blue balloons. Cut out some objects from blue paper and tape them all over the room, on the windows, doors, walls, etc. Put a few blue objects on the floor, such as cars, balls, blocks, pegs, pompoms, etc.

2. Bead stringing: Use different colored beads to teach or practice colors.

3. Building blocks: Use different colored blocks to teach or practice colors.

4. Play-dough: Use play-dough to teach or practice colors.

5. Scavenger hunt: Hide different objects in targeted colors around the room and have children find them.

6. Matching games: Have children put different colored pompoms in colored cups, etc.

7. Color or draw with crayons.

8. Paint with different colored paint.

9. Dress up: Let the child choose different colored shirts, etc.

10. Books: Read books that are meant to teach colors.

11. I spy color: Use books or colorful magazines to play an "I spy" game with color.

Beata Klarowska, M.S. CCC-SLP

Beata Klarowska is an American Speech Language-Hearing Association (ASHA) certified speech and language pathologist, licensed by the state of California.Beata cofounded Virtual Speech Center Inc. in 2011 and, to date, has developed more than 30 apps for speech, language, and cognition.


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