This delightful handprint colour mixing activity is a fun and hands-on way for your children to explore colour. What does blue and yellow, yellow and red or red and blue make when mixed? Watch the colours change right before their very eyes!
This activity not only supports your children’s artistic skills, but also introduces them to the concept of primary and secondary colours and creates magical moments of learning.
What Children Learn from this Colour Mixing Activity
Colour mixing is an essential skill for children as it allows them to understand how different colours interact with one another. By engaging in hands-on colour mixing activities, children develop a deeper understanding of primary and secondary colours, as well as the concept of combining colours to create new shades. Exploring colour mixing encourages creativity, critical thinking, and problem-solving skills, making it a valuable learning experience for children of all ages.
Let’s Get Started with this Handprint Colour Mixing Activity
- Paint (red, blue and yellow)
- Marker (optional)
Related: Favourite Home Learning Supplies, including washable paint for colour mixing activities like this one.
How to carry out the colour mixing activity
Step 1: Choose 2 primary colours from red, blue or yellow.
Step 2: Use a paintbrush to apply one of the colours to your child's hand, then have them make a handprint on the paper.
Step 3: Use the paintbrush to paint the other primary colour on the other hand and make a handprint on the paper.
Step 4 (Optional step): Use the marker to add in a + sign between both hand prints and = sign at the end
Step 5: Watch the magic happen as you press your hands together, allowing the paint to mix
Step 6: Add one handprint of the mixed colour to the paper.
Step 7: Repeat the activity using other combinations of primary colours.
Helpful Colour Theory Notes for Parents
- Primary colours = red, blue and yellow
- Secondary colours = green, orange and purple
- Red + blue = purple
- Blue + yellow = green
- Yellow + red = orange
How to Engage Your Child During the Colour Mixing Activity
Engage your child in conversations about the colours they are using. Encourage them to name the colours and ask questions like, "What happens when we mix red and blue?" or "Which colours can we mix to make green?"
Allow them to explore the sensory experience by asking questions about how the paint feels on their hands, such as "Is it sticky? Soft? Hard? Rough?"
This hands-on approach allows them to witness the transformation firsthand, making it easier for them to understand the colour mixing process. As they experiment with different combinations, celebrate their discoveries and encourage them to express their creativity through colour exploration.
Hate the mess? Try this non-messy version!
If your children don’t like to get their hands messy, that’s okay, try this non-messy version of this colour mixing activity using a zipper bag. Squirt a little paint into a zipper bag, seal it then push the paint around and watch the colours mix. I recommend taping it to a flat surface such as a table or window to make the activity more accessible for your little ones.
This brilliant Volcano Eruption Colour Mixing in a Bag is a mess free way for children to mix colours and learn about volcanoes!
Questions about Colour Mixing
Colour mixing activities enhance children's cognitive development by fostering creativity, critical thinking, and problem-solving skills. They also introduce children to important concepts such as primary and secondary colours and encourage sensory exploration.
While colour mixing activities are generally safe and fun, it's important to ensure proper supervision and use child-friendly, non-toxic paints. Cover the working area with protective materials or use washable paints to minimise any potential mess. Also, encourage children to wash their hands thoroughly after the activity.
When we mix the primary colours together, new secondary colours are formed. Red and blue combine to create purple, blue and yellow mix to make green, and yellow and red blend to produce orange. Through the handprint colour mixing activity, children can witness the exciting transformation as their primary colours merge and give rise to vibrant secondary colours.