Toddler and Pre-School Theme Days
Having colour theme days is a great way to introduce/teach/reinforce the colours to your toddler.
When my youngest son was 2 ½ he showed no interest in learning his colours. We read him a few books about colours and used his colour sorting toys but he still mixed them up. Once we started these theme days he caught on quickly and started to proudly exclaim what colours he was wearing or what colours were on his toys without prompting. He even named what Colour Day he wanted to do next.
My eldest son was a little jealous about his little brother getting special theme days so we started to wait until he got home from school to do the colour hunts.
Print out the Family Theme Day Planner and decide which activities you’d like to do.
Go through your crayons, markers, paints and construction/craft paper and remove all the yellow ones to use for this theme.
Set aside any dishes (cups, plates, bowls, plastic spoons etc.) you may have that are yellow and use these for snacks, lunch, dinner etc..
Set aside yellow clothes for your child to wear that day (and yourself, too, if you’d like).
Download from your favourite music provider the Beetle’s “Yellow Submarine” for some dancing fun, or for something more modern try Coldplay’s song “Yellow.”
Go online to your favourite search engine to find colouring pages of yellow things or favourite yellow characters or print out my Yellow Things Colouring Page. Use yellow crayons and yellow markers to colour.
Materials: Yellow paper and white paper, old magazines, child-safe scissors, washable glue stick, damp facecloth for sticky fingers.
· Step 1: Look through old magazines with your child and have him/her point out anything yellow he/she sees.
· Step 2: Help your child cut out the yellow pictures from the magazine to make a pile of yellow pictures.
· Step 3: Show your child how to glue the pictures onto the yellow sheet of paper to make a collage and then let him/her glue the pictures on the paper however he/she likes.
· Step 4: When the collage is dry display (fridge, bulletin board, child’s door) or glue into Family Theme Scrapbook.
Materials: yellow crayons and markers, sheet of yellow paper, child-safe scissors, glue stick, stapler, magazine pictures of yellow things or my Yellow Things Colouring Page, a facecloth for sticky fingers.
· Step 1: Sit with your child as you sort through magazine for yellow things, or as your child colours each object on the colouring page yellow, or as your child draws his/her own yellow things for the booklet (six in total).
· Step 2: Help your child cut out the individual pictures.
· Step 3: Fold the sheet of yellow paper into three parts (as if you were going to put it in an envelope) and cut along the folds to make three yellow rectangles.
· Step 4: Fold each of these three yellow pieces of paper in half and cut along the fold to make six small sheets of paper.
· Step 5: Have your child apply glue to each yellow picture and glue each one to a small sheet of yellow paper.
· Step 6: Help your child staple the sheets together to make a little book.
· Step 7: Read the book together to review the colour yellow.
Paint with Yellow paint (set out newspaper or a plastic sheet before hand and don’t forget to wear old shirts or art smocks).
Search through your child’s books to find any that teach the colours and flip to the yellow pages.
Go to the library before hand to find some colour books. Many libraries allow you to go online and search for titles based on subject (type in “Yellow” or “Colours” under Children’s Books). Reserve them if you can to save time.
Try some of these titles if you can find them:
· Is It Red? Is It Yellow? Is It Blue? By Tana Hoban, Greenwillow books, 1978 – This is a book of colour photographs with no words but it uses coloured dots on each page instead; it is great for toddlers to point to the dots and then point to the colour on the page.
· Kitten Red Yellow Blue, by Peter Catalanotto, A Richard Jackson Book Atheneum Books For Young Readers, 2005 – A review of sixteen different colours by teaming kittens up with people of different professions.
· Lemons Are Not Red, by Laura Vaccaro Seeger, A Neal Porter Book, Roaring Brook Press, 2004 – This is a fun book with cut outs on each page that at first reveal the wrong colour but then when you turn the page show the real colour of each object.
Serve up some fresh yellow veggies like yellow pepper stripes or yellow tomatoes if they are in season.
Serve up some yellow fruits like bananas, yellow apples, pineapple chunks, or if you have a child who likes sour things small slices of lemon (my youngest used to love lemons and would even eat the peel if I didn’t stop him in time)
Try some banana flavoured milk If you can find it (in the dairy section of your grocery store)
Ingredients: vanilla yogurt and yellow food colouring
Step 1: Help your child scoop white yogurt into a bowl (a yellow bowl if you have one).
Step 2: Put 1 or 2 drops of yellow food colouring in the yogurt for your child.
Step 3: Have your child stir the food colouring into the yogurt with a spoon.
Ingredients: ½ cup sugar, ½ cup water, lemons or 2 tbsp of lemon juice per glass, water and ice-cubes (a manual juicer is a good thing to have, too).
Step 1: Put the sugar and the water in a small pot and heat over medium heat, stirring occasionally until the sugar is dissolved. Cool to room temperature or make before and put in the fridge to use when you and your child are ready to make lemonade).
Step 2: Squeeze the lemons with a juicer or a fork to get 2 tablespoons of juice per glass.
Step 3: In a glass combine 2 tablespoons of lemon juice, 3 tablespoons of sugar syrup and ¾ cup of water.
Step 4: Have your child mix it gently with a spoon and then add ice cubes.
Step 5: Enjoy!
For a delicious creamy treat try Knorr’s Yellow Soup with summer squash, corn and carrot.
Serve corn (canned or frozen kernels or fresh cobs if in season) for a yellow veggie at supper time or stir fry some yellow summer squash if it is in season.
Lemon Pudding—Follow package instructions for an easy yellow dessert.
Materials: yellow squares of paper in a sandwich bag (optional) or a yellow crayon or marker, glue stick, damp facecloth for sticky fingers, print out of List of Yellow Things.
· Step 1: Explain to your child that you are on a hunt for the colour yellow.
· Step 2: walk around the house and/ or outside to look for yellow things.
· Step 3: When your child finds something yellow you will write the name of the object etc. on a slip of yellow paper (or directly on the chart) and your child will glue the yellow square on the sheet (or colour the square with a yellow crayon).
· Step 4: at the end of the hunt sit down and count out loud together how many yellow things were found. Review what you found by reading the chart out loud.
Coloured Blocks: with your child, sort through toy blocks to find only the yellow ones. Together make towers with the yellow blocks.
Search through your child’s toys to find any that are yellow to play with.
Play with yellow play dough or modelling clay.
Play “I Spy With My Little Eye” looking for yellow things only.
Put a few drops of yellow food coloring (liquid) in jar of water – let your child stir and watch as the water turns yellow. If you have a white carnation put it in the yellow water and leave if for a few days the yellow will seep into the flower and make the edges yellow.
Search through your child’s DVD/ video collection (or visit your local library before hand or the Video Store) to find shows with yellow characters like Sesame Street with Big Bird or the Wiggles or those with the theme of teaching colours.
Try this title for a perfect toddler show that highlights many colours:
· Baby Einstein: Baby Van Gogh – World of Colour
Photo: C Wright
Yellow wild flowers.
Painting with yellow paint.
Make some lemonade with yellow lemons!