Magic mixing: primary colour mixing for toddlers

Want to share a tiny bit of magic with your little one? This primary colour mixing activity is the one for you! 

Ev loves colours. He enjoys picking out his favourite and talking about shades of the same colour. But mixing them was a whole new adventure. 

You need:

  • Three ziplock bags;
  • Red, yellow and blue paint; and
  • Glitter. 

A wand is nice to have but not essential!

Before you get started: be sure to check out my 8 Principles of Play!

Ev isn’t a huge fan of many things arty. He has to be in the right mood. Because of this, I needed to add a little extra sparkle to this activity as I was pretty sure mixing colours with a paintbrush wouldn’t be enough to entice him. 

Instead, I declared that he was going to pretend to be a wizard for the afternoon and that we’d be carrying out some magic spells. He was quite taken with his idea and sat beautifully at his table excitedly awaiting his first magic cauldron bag (because wizards are very polite too, of course). 

I laid each bag on a tray and squirted two primary colours in each (in opposing corners to one another) ready to make the secondary colours of orange, green and purple.  I sprinkled glitter between the two blobs of paint and secured the bag. 

I gave each bag to Ev and explained that mixing the two colours would be like magic, because a new colour would be created. He’d need to use his fingers to mix the two paints and could say a magic spell while he did it if he liked. He loved this! He tapped each bag with his wand, we guessed which colour the mix would make, and he loved watching the paints mix and the secondary colour ‘appear’. 

While we chatted afterwards about the fact that this isn’t actually magic at all, it’s very clever science, this didn’t remove any of the sparkle for Ev and he proceeded to attempt some spells designed to make me disappear!

This activity is great for colours, language and critical thinking. It’s also a wonderful introduction to science for your little ones!

Further development through play:

  • Critical thinking: further explore cause and effect by adding different amounts of each primary colour to see how this changes the end result. 
  • Tertiary colours: create six tertiary colours by mixing primary and secondary colours. 
  • Language: chat about different shades of colours and names of colours. Talk about which colours your little one likes best and why. 

No Comments

    Leave a Reply

    This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.