COLOUR FRIENDS – Mixing Primary Colours, Symmetry

Children create fun, symmetrical creations as they learn about colour mixing.

Required Time

60 Minutes

Grade Level

Pre-Kindergarten to Kindergarten


Language Arts
Visual Arts


blend colour colour mixing primary colours shape symmetry


Crayola Washable Project Paint - Primary Colours Crayola Marker & Watercolour Paper - 22.9 cm x 30.5 cm (9" x 12") Crayola Glitter Glue Crayola Scissors Crayola Construction Paper - 22.9 cm x 30.5 cm (9" x 12") - Black Crayola Washable No-Run School Glue Eye Droppers or Pipettes Small Paper Cups Googly Eyes and Other Embellishments

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COLOUR FRIENDS – Mixing Primary Colours, Symmetry - Step One

Step One

  1. There are 3 Primary Colours - red, blue, yellow.
  2. Choose 2.
COLOUR FRIENDS – Mixing Primary Colours, Symmetry - Step Two

Step Two

  1. Squeeze a few drops of each colour onto the paper.
COLOUR FRIENDS – Mixing Primary Colours, Symmetry - Step Three

Step Three

  1. Fold the paper in half, short end to short end.
  2.  Use your fingers and the palm of your hand to rub over the surface of the paper.
  3. Feel the paint squishing together inside the paper.
COLOUR FRIENDS – Mixing Primary Colours, Symmetry - Step Four

Step Four

  1. Open up the paper.
  2. What do you notice?
  3. What new colour was created when blue and yellow mixed together?
  4. What do you notice about the way the shape looks on both sides of the fold line?
  5. Set the paper aside to dry.
COLOUR FRIENDS – Mixing Primary Colours, Symmetry - Step Five

Step Five

  1. Change 1 of the primary colours.
  2. Squeeze a few drops of each colour onto the paper.
  3. Fold and rub the paper like you did before.
  4. What do you think is going to happen when you open the paper?
  5. Repeat these steps with a new combination of 2 primary colours.
  6. You should have made 3 shapes using different combinations of 2 primary colours.
    - Blue + Yellow
    - Yellow + Red
    - Blue + Red
  7. What did you learn about primary colours?
  8. Set the papers aside to dry.
COLOUR FRIENDS – Mixing Primary Colours, Symmetry - Step Six

Step Six

  1. Choose one shape to work on.
  2. Cut it out.
  3. What does the shape remind you of?
  4. Decorate it with glitter glue and other things.
COLOUR FRIENDS – Mixing Primary Colours, Symmetry - Step Seven

Step Seven

  1. Glue the finished shape to a piece of black construction paper.
  2. Give it a title.
  3. Use Construction Paper Crayons to write on the construction paper.
  4. Compare your shape with others.
    - How are they the same?
    - How are they different? 
    - What do you like best about the shapes?

Learning Goals

Students will be able to:

  • mix primary colours to create new colours;
  • work independently and self-regulate;
  • create personal responses to the centre materials; 
  • share their ideas with peers.


  1. Science Centre – Provide samples of flowers, trees, plants, and grasses. Include a grid for students to sort objects according to colour.
    - Provide colour transparencies or colour paddles for children to explore.
  2. Nature Walk – Go on a nature walk during each season. Discuss how colours change each season. Prepare a class chart outlining what colours were observed during each season. 
  3. Music – Provide a variety of kinds of music at the listening centre. Include a grid for students to sort the music according to colour.
  4. Art – Provide an assortment of art postcards or small art reproductions. Encourage students to match a postcard with one of their colour friends. Ask them to explain how they made their choice.
    - Provide a large selection of colour paint chips for children to sort and explore. Encourage them to make up fancy names for the colours.
  5. Language Arts – Display and make available a variety of colour focused books, for example, A Book About Color: A Clear and Simple Guide for Young Artists, by Mark Gonyea; An Eye for Color: The Story of Josef Albers, by Natasha Wing; Mouse Paint, by Ellen Strohl Walsh; A Color of His Own by Leo Lionni; The Noisy Paint Box: The Colors and Sounds of Kandinsky's Abstract Art, by Barb Rosenstock; and Color Dance, by Ann Jones. 


  1. Pour primary colours into small paper cups and place an eyedropper into each cup.
  2. Have enough paper set out for each student.
  3. Gather and make available a variety of books about colour such as, A Color of His Own by Leo Lionni; Mouse Paint, by Ellen Strohl Walsh; The Color Monster: A Story About Emotions, by Anna Llen; Mix It Up, by Herve Tullet; Monsters Love Colors, by Mike Austin; Little Blue and Little Yellow, by Leo Lionni; The Mixed-Up Chameleon, by Eric Carle; and The Noisy Paint Box: The Colors and Sounds of Kandinsky's Abstract Art, by Barb Rosenstock.
  4. Make sure you have a spot to place the completed paintings to dry.
  5. Download and display the Colour Wheel poster available on this Website.
  6. Teach or review characteristics of symmetrical shapes.


  1. During read-aloud time read several books about colour, for example,
    Mouse Paint, by Ellen Strohl Walsh (An entertaining story that teaches children about primary and secondary colours.)
    A Color of His Own by Leo Lionni (A story that uses colour to teach about difference and being the same.) 
  2. Discuss the stories with the children sharing personal connections.
  3. Make a chart of children's favourite colours.
  4. Introduce the challenge.


The Challenge

  1. Use your imagination and problem-solving skills to explore ideas in this centre.
  2. Explain what happens when you mix 2 primary colours together.
  3. Cut out symmetrical shapes.
  4. Create a person, place or thing out of your symmetrical shapes.
  5. Share your ideas with others.

The Process

  1. View the colour wheel and connect it with students' favourite colours.
  2. Discuss how the primary colours can make all kinds of other colours when mixed together.
  3. Explain to students that they will be using the primary colours to make new colours and interesting shapes.
  4. Ensure that all materials are readily available.
  5. Guide students through the steps outlined in the lesson plan.
  6. Observe students as they work.
  7. Provide individual assistance and encouragement.


  1. As children are working and creating encourage them to share what they have created with each other.
  2. Ask students to bring their finished Colour Friend to the circle to share with the class.
  3. Guide children as they share asking questions such as, 
    - What do you notice about the orange colours in 3 different paintings?  
    - Why do you think they look different?
    - What do you see that makes you think that? 
    - How do you know it's a symmetrical shape?
    - What else does this shape remind you of?
  4. Display the Colour Friends in the classroom and encourage students to view and discuss them with their peers.


  1. Observe students as they work – thoughtful focus, discriminating, seeking more information, elaborating, experimenting.
  2. Observe students as they discuss their paintings – speaks with a clear voice, looks at audience while speaking, points to areas in the painting, provides accurate information, answers questions from the audience effectively.
  3. Observe students as they listen – looks at presenter, asks effective questions, supports ideas with evidence found in the artwork.
  4. Use a checklist to track progress. (Downloads - ColourFriends_tracking.pdf)