Art Ed Wednesday: Paint Mixing

This week’s post by Rachel Johnston, a fiber artist in Ruston, LA. Rachel teaches early childhood art classes at Creative Journey Studio. She will be posting each Wednesday. Hello! I hope everyone had a nice holiday season. Today I’ll be talking a little about mixing colors. In my experience, preschoolers love mixing colors. This is a good activity for these cold, rainy days we tend to have this time of year! Grab some paint in primary colors and let your child choose 2 colors to mix. Don’t tell them which color it will make….let them discover it. As they mix the paints, they will see the new color emerging. Let them make a few colors this way, and then encourage them to mix different amounts of paint for different shades. Eventually they might mix it all together and make brown, that’s fine too. The important thing here is for kids to enjoy the process of discovering what happens when colors are mixed. After they learn this, refresh their memory from time to time. Running out of certain colors of paint can be a great way to do that. If the kids want to paint something purple, but there’s no purple paint, ask them how they think the problem can be solved. My students’ first answer was “let’s go to wal-mart!”. I asked if they thought there was any possible way we could get purple paint without a trip to wal-mart. Suddenly one child remembered, and suggested we mix our own. After a little more brainstorming, they remembered that mixing red and blue would give them purple. After children have mixed colors using paint, they will probably enjoy trying to mix colors when working with crayons, chalk, modeling clay, and colored pencils as well. Let them try it using different materials, and discuss what type of results they get with each one. This will help them become more familiar with colors as well as art materials, and it will stretch their creativity as they consider different options.

student artist explores paint mixing