Color is all around us!
A color wheel displays the relationship between different colors across our spectrum. It is an abstract diagram showing the primary, secondary, and tertiary colors.
Mixing colors and exploring the color wheel is an integral part of art activities both in and out of the classroom. This doesn’t just mean mixing paint and coloring with pencils! Let’s make this art topic fun by exploring some of the ideas below!
1. Color Theory Chart
The following downloadable color wheel worksheet will give your students an insight into how a color wheel works, as well as the links between primary, and secondary colors, complementary colors, and hues. It also includes handy ‘objectives’ to use within art lessons!
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2. Recycled Mosaics
Once students understand the basics of a color wheel, incorporate some other art techniques such as mosaics; using recyclable materials, to teach about sustainability too. Create a color wheel-inspired mosaic to display on the classroom wall!
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3. Mandala Color Wheels
Incorporate this fun idea into religious festivals or themed days. A mandala-style color wheel with additional patterns and techniques (cross-hatching, blending, fading, or watercolors) provides your students with the opportunity to be creative and show off their uniqueness, whilst exploring both warm and cool colors.
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4. 3D Color Wheels from Paper Plates
This clear, step-by-step lesson plan demonstrates how to teach your students about the color wheel whilst making a 3D paper plate model to display. This activity is hands-on and is sure to be a winner with older elementary!
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5. Color Mixing Sheet
Simple, yet effective, this easy-to-read color worksheet will give all learners the opportunity to use math to add up their colors and create new ones. For ESL learners, this will also enable them to learn the name of colors in a simple, yet visual way. This also contains the written word for each of the colors to enable students to practice spelling.
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6. Color Wheel DIY Matching Craft
Create a very simple color wheel with colored pegs and watch your young learners play match-up! This will also help with fine motor skills and the ability to recognize the spelling of different colors.
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7. Truffula Trees
If your students are a fan of Dr. Seuss’s work, link in color mixing to the story of The Lorax; creating Truffula trees using different colors, shades, and hues. This easy step-by-step guide shows you how to make a creative lesson inspired by one of the quirkiest authors using new techniques too!
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8. Color Exploration Projects
This handy YouTube video provides a range of ideas on how to teach the color wheel using 3 different art mediums (pastels, watercolors, and colored pencils). It introduces blending and shade to develop further art concepts with your students. There is also a link to various worksheets in the explanation for easy and minimal prep time.
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9. Nature Color Wheels
Your students may love spending time outdoors and may then want to get involved in an art project. What better way to explore a color wheel than by finding matching natural resources? It sure beats the standard color wheel exploration!
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10. Color Matching Games
These fun and easy-to-make color games will suit younger students who are still learning basic colors. You can introduce these to your classroom in any way you choose, from matching up similar colors to choosing ‘bright’ or ‘dark’ colors, to develop your children’s understanding. This could then lead to a discussion about shading and contrast.
Learn More: Preschool Color Match
11. An Object Color Wheel
This activity would suit younger to middle elementary students. Once they understand the basics of color, ask them to find and collect items from around the classroom (or at home) to make a giant ‘object’ color wheel. You could create the template from tape on the floor or print out a large sheet of paper for them to display their findings.
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For older students, when teaching lessons on color, test their knowledge by asking them to fill in this blank worksheet using their knowledge of the color wheel. There are handy hints at the bottom that you could either use or remove to play with the difficulty level. This would be a great consolidation activity for an art class.
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13. Color Research Interview
Have your art students develop a short questionnaire about colors, using the example provided, to gather findings on classmates, parents, or guardians’ favorite colors, before they start to explore the color wheel properly.
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14. The Color Emotion Wheel
Link colors to emotions! Once your students have a basic understanding of the color wheel, incorporate social and emotional skills into a lesson and ask them which emotions they associate with each color. This could be a good lesson to encourage your learners to express themselves through art as well.
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