Mixing Colours

You will need: red paint, yellow paint, blue paint, white paint, (I recommend poster paint, please check paints first as some blues and reds can stain, I've had a 2 year old with blue hands for a week!!) white paper, optional old clothes, optional plastic mat, lots of containers eg. yoghurt pots, brushes, sticks, a wet cloth or wetwipes will be useful cleaning up painty hands quickly at the end.

It can be a good idea to set up a special space for doing craft with your child where mess does not matter too much, if you can't/don't want to, I really recommend old clothes (on you too!) and a plastic mat to cover surfaces - then you needn't worry about mess, just enjoy the time with your child!

Give your child 2 colours to start with eg red and yellow, and let them try mixing orange and different shades of orange. Another day give them red and blue and let them make purpley colours. Another time give them yellow and blue to mix different greeny colours. They can also mix white in to make paler colours, or mix all the colours to make brown. So many kids at primary schools (and sometimes older, even adults) struggle to remember how to make green so let them learn to do it for themselves. It's surprising how easily kids can pick this idea up - my 3 year old now says “If I put more blue in it will make dark green Mummy, but look it's light because it's all yellow” We have just started to talk about the order of colours in the rainbow and how to make a colour wheel... Here's a colour wheel as a reminder:

If you find this subject interesting and want to know more here's a useful link about mixing colours, including a section for kids: http://artintegrity.wordpress.com/category/colour-mixing/

Here's another painting idea: http://www.faerieclareart.com/blog/tag/paint