Children Creating Colourful Spaces
I have recently worked on a project looking at colour with young children. We investigated colour by exposing children to different colours every day and allowing them to explore those colours in different ways. We painted with colours, molded with different coloured playdough, splashed in different coloured water—and had a colour collection. The colour collection idea came from a child. He collected things in his bucket, and called it his collection.
We talked about favourite colours, had a Favourite Colour Day when we wore our favourite colours to school, and shared our favourite colours with friends. Another thing we did with colour was look at feelings. We looked at the story My Many Coloured Days by Dr Seuss. During this story children investigated how different colours made us feel. We talked about this during circle time and chose which colour we were feeling that day—and told everyone why.
We have a wonderful rainbow tunnel at school, and left out different materials to allow the children to investigate and create their own space. We asked them first what they would like to use to create their space. Some wanted specific colours. Some wanted material. Some wanted balloons and other things. The children created a beautiful colourful space filled with materials, scarves, balloons, and beanbags. They pulled everything into the area including pictures from the artist David Batchelor.
We have looked closely at the art of David Batchelor and his blob paintings. We have put Batchelor’s artwork on the wall where children can investigate it. One child used a balloon to match to one of Batchelor’s paintings. Another student created her own art structure, based on the paintings, during a transient art session. Once she had created it, and was asked about her creation, she said she made it like the picture on the wall. Amazing!
The children have also investigated mixing colours, playdough, paints, different coloured water, chalks and more, and have discussed their results with their peers and adults. The students have been fully active in their learning, and now have a good understanding of colour, and what happens when we work with colour. Hopefully, we have given them a curiosity for art from our exploration of colour.
Lorraine Munro is currently a Senior Early Years Practitioner working in a pre-school/nursery class in a school in Scotland. She is also a Promethean Advocate. Previously, she has been an ICT staff tutor supporting early years establishments, and primary schools in using ICT to enhance learning and teaching. Lorraine loves using technology to support learning, but ultimately sees Active Learning through play as the key to engaging young people.