A paper plate colour wheel is easy to make, and a great way to teach toddlers and preschoolers about rainbow order, colour and colour mixing!
At this time of year, after weeks of dreary, grey skies, I start to yearn for colourful crafts like our rainbow wind chimes and rainbow collages. Yesterday we made this vibrant paper plate colour wheel. It’s one of many in our A-Z paper plate crafts collection. It was a wonderful way for the hooligans to learn about colour order, and they had a great time blending their colours, and piecing together their colour wheels.
And after numerous winter crafts and activities, and months of snow, these colour wheels were truly a site for tired eyes.
Teaching toddlers and preschoolers about colours and colour-blending:
A colour wheel is a useful tool to teach kids about colours and rainbow order, and it can used to help explain primary, secondary and tertiary colours and the basics of colour-mixing.
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Supplies for making a Paper Plate Colour Wheel:
- White 6″ Paper Plates – 100 Count
- acrylic craft paints
- paint pallet or small paint cups
How we made our colour wheels:
We started by looking at some colour wheels on the internet, and talking about the colours that made them up: Red, Orange, Yellow, Green, Blue and Violet. Then I had the girls choose 2 colours each to work on.
Each hooligan received their paper plates and some pots of acrylic paint. If they’d chosen a primary colour (red, blue or yellow), they received several shades of that colour. If they chose a secondary colour, they received a few pots of the primary AND secondary colours that would make up their colour.
And then they painted and blended and mixed their paint colours until their plates were entirely covered. Colour mixing is always such a gorgeous and almost magical activity for a young child. “Look, Jackie! My red and blue made purple!”
The paint dried quite quickly, and while the girls were having snack, they watched me use a pencil and ruler to mark 6 pie-shaped sections on the backs of their plates. Then I cut them into wedges. Older children will enjoy doing this process themselves.
Back at the craft table, the hooligans explored the colourful “pieces of pie” and eventually they sorted them into 6 stacks, which we arranged in rainbow order.
Then each hooligan their own stack of 6 colourful wedges, and received a fresh paper plate on which I’d drawn 6 sections. They applied glue to their paper plates, and matched up their painted wedges to the ones drawn on the plate, press in them into place.
It wasn’t until after the craft was done that I realized how interesting it was that all three of the girls had arranged their coloured in the opposite direction of a real colour wheel.
Oh well, it wasn’t really about making a true-to-life colour wheel. It was about exploring and being creative and enjoying the vibrant pop of colour that our colour wheel provided on a dull and blustery winter day.
For more easy, colourful crafts for kids, check out our:
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Jackie is a mom, wife, home daycare provider, and the creative spirit behind Happy Hooligans. She specializes in kids’ crafts and activities, easy recipes, and parenting. In 1997, Jackie stepped out of the corporate world to start a family and to open her own home daycare. She began blogging in 2011, and today, Happy Hooligans inspires more than 2 million parents, caregivers and Early Years Professionals all over the globe.