Mixing Colors in Grade One

Kids love paint and the magic of mixing their own colors. Take out your paints and art smocks because this is a really fun lesson!

Primary Colors: red, yellow and blue

Start your lesson by reviewing the primary colors (red, yellow and blue). I like to call these colors the super hero colors because they have ‘super powers’. These super heroes can mix together to make the secondary colors (orange, purple, green and brown) and help make every other color in the whole wide world. Be dramatic here, change your voice and basically act really goofy which is what I always do anyway!

Once your students are jazzed up and ready to start, give out 12×18 paper, pencils and rulers. Ask your kids to make 10 vertical lines from top to bottom anywhere on the page. While they are doing this, take out the paint trays, styro-foam dishes or whatever you use and put out the three ‘super hero colors’ on each table. Give out brushes and make sure you also give out a water container so your students can wash their brush between colors. I use an empty yogurt container on a styro-foam tray because there will always be a spill.

Explain to your students that they should paint two sections red, two blue and two yellow in different sections and not next to each other. Example: two blues can’t be together. I also suggest that everyone begin with yellow because not everyone washes their brush completely and you want to keep the yellow as yellow as possible.

Mixing secondary colors–so much fun!

All the colors are done

Once the primary colors are painted, let them begin to mix the colors to create the secondary colors. Either have them do it directly on their paper or they can do it on the same paint tray depending if you have space.  They will have one last segment to paint so let them mix their own ‘special’ color. Don’t forget they should mix all three colors to see what new color they create.

Finally, give out black paint and thin brushes to outline their segments. You can go one step further and when these are dry, give out oil pastels and let your kids make a few lines or swirls  in each color segment. Blue oil pastel in the blue sections, etc.

Cute huh?


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One thought on “Mixing Colors in Grade One

  1. Hello, my name is Vanesa and I’m from Chile, I am studying Elementary General Education and I must say I love your blog because it provides information useful to the people who like art, l consider myself someone who loves art, and l would love to teach it in the future. I would tell you that I really liked your post called “Mixing Colors in Grade One” especially the part where you point to the primary colors as superheroes colors, is very creative and helps the children’s learning. I congratulate you for the beautiful blog you have yet to thank you for allowing us access your blog to see the beautiful work you do.

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