Traffic Light Crossings

Turn crossing the street with your child into a multi-faceted learning activity: When you stop in front of a traffic light, ask your child to name the colors. Discuss what each color means in the context of the traffic light and crosswalk. Then talk about how to cross the street safely.(read more)

Sidewalk Shape Game

Draw shapes on the sidewalk with chalk (do 2 or 3 of each shape if you have multiple children). Then make a game out of finding the shapes. For younger kids, you can just ask 'can you find the triangle' and have them go stand on it. For older kids, you can make it more of a race -- 'Can you find the square' and then everyone ...(read more)

Mixing Colors

Teach your child how to mix two colors together to make another color (e.g. yellow+blue makes green and red+blue makes purple). To begin, fill up a couple of clear glasses with water. Then, allow your kids to add drops of food coloring to make your color mixes -- you can use this part to teach older kids basic addition. The kids will have fun experimenting -- make ...(read more)

Clean Up by Color

Get large plastic buckets (or sand buckets if you have lots of really little toys )in a variety of solid colors (red, blue, yellow, green, pink). Ask your child to clean up his/her toys by putting the toys in the bucket corresponding to the color bucket. Great for teaching personal responsibility, color identification, and sorting. (read more)

Ziploc Bag Painting

A fun way to teach colors and color mixing (red and white make pink, etc) with less mess. Take large storage bags and have your child pour a little paint, just one color, in the bag (if you have paint with squirt tops, that's even better!). Then, have them choose another color and have them guess what color it will make. Pastel paints work great because they ...(read more)

Crazy Centipede

Cut out circles of colored paper for your child and ask your child to stick them in a row on paper, with each circle overlapping slightly. Then draw eyes with a marker or glue on googly eyes from the craft store. For the finishing touches, add antennae and feet created from felt, paper, or pipe cleaners.(read more)


Color Matchbox

On a large sheet of paper, draw a big square or rectangle and divide it into ten smaller squares. One for Red, Orange, Yellow, Green, Blue, Purple, Pink, Grey, Black and White Then, using scraps of paper cut from magazines, have your child choose the scraps of a specific color and fill in each square with a different color. For example, have your child find ...(read more)


Verde means Go!

When teaching my son how to say red, yellow or green in Spanish, we practice in the car with the signal lights. Each light we pass I say if the light is Rojo (Red), Amarillo (Yellow) or Green (Verde). Then after enough repetition I ask him which color the light is showing. This works for any language.(read more)

Eat Your Colors

My two-year-old twins love shouting out colors. One fun way to encourage them to eat fruit and to show off their knowledge of colors is to cut up a fruit salad with strawberries, blueberries, cantaloupe, honeydew melon, kiwi etc. and then shout out 'eat something something orange.' They love picking out the correct fruit and eating it. You can try this with veggies, too. Of ...(read more)

Tray of Colors

Get a baking sheet tray. Choose a color and ask your child to find as many things as he can of that color. For example, if you said 'red', your child could find an apple, a red car, a red crayon, a red flower, a red bottle of nail polish and so on.(read more)

Tie Dying for Tots

A great way to save some of your kids' stained clothing is to tie dye it. The kids love it. Take any light color garment and gather a small section in your hand (this is what will create the tie-dye circles). Bind the section together by wrapping a rubber band around the material. Repeat as many times as you wish. Then fill buckets ...(read more)

Homemade Crayons

This is a fun craft you can do with your leftover broken crayons. Preheat oven to 300 degrees. Get a muffin tin and line it with foil, spray foil lightly with non-stick spray. Then, take your old, broken crayon pieces (use pieces smaller than 1/2 inch) and put them in the tins. Put in oven and check periodically until fully melted. Take tin out and ...(read more)

Painting with Marbles

Place a white sheet of paper on a cookie sheet or other pan with taller sides. Place several drops of paint (different colors) on the paper. Then, place a few marbles in the pan, have your child roll them around, and see what designs can be made!(read more)

Red Car, Green Car

Whenever we're in the car and my toddler seems bored I ask her to find a red car. She loves this game! It's turned into finding all different colors. You can also do this activity by asking what color the car in front of you or beside you is. This easy-to-play game makes a car trip pass more quickly, which is easier for everyone! (read more)

Snow Painting

On those cold snowy winter days, bundle up your kids and give them a couple of spray bottles. Fill the spray bottles with water and add a little food coloring to each one. The kids can spray the colored water onto the snow and create a masterpieces!(read more)

Colored Ice

Young children are fascinated by changes in their environment. This activity is a very simple way (especially on a hot day) to cool off while learning a little about science. Make ice cubes with water that has been colored with food dye. Best colors are red, blue, green, as those colors tend to make the brightest ice. Place the frozen ice cubes in bags and set ...(read more)


Water Bottle Fun

Have your child help you mix together bubble solution, water, and food coloring in an empty plastic water bottle. Your child can then shake it up or squeeze it to see lots of colorful, bubbly fun. This activity is a great way to teach about colors. But you can also use it to teach critical thinking: What will happen if we add more bubbles? What ...(read more)

Colored Jello Fun

Follow the directions to create clear gelatin (Knox is a common brand). Then fill up an ice tray with the clear gelatin liquid and put a few drops of different food coloring liquid in each cup. Cool according to the package directions. Once the gelatin has cooled, put one or several 'cubes' into a clear plastic bag and seal with duct tape. Your kids will have a ...(read more)

Painting with Cars

Cover a table with butcher paper. Using washable paint, put some into little trays. Then, take a few little cars that have tread on their tires. Dip into paint and roll onto paper. Mix it up by using a few different colors.(read more)

Homemade Color Chart

Draw a big circle with black marker on a large white piece of paper or poster board. Divide the circle into six sections, like a pie. Have your little one help you color in one pie section with red paint (finger paint is especially good), leave the next one blank, then fill the next one in yellow, then blank, then blue. Next step: in the blank spaces between ...(read more)


Painting with Golf Balls

Take an old shoe box or shirt box and put a piece of construction paper in it. Then take some poster paint and dab it on the paper in the box. Next place a golf ball in the box and have your child tilt the box all around so the ball smears the paint to create a picture. It's lots of fun! Black paper with white ...(read more)

Rainbow Stew

Stir together 1 cup cornstarch, 4 cups water, and 1/3 cup sugar in a medium saucepan. Heat on the stove until thick. Remove from heat and wait for it to cool. Pour the mixture into sandwich-size ziploc bags, filling each one halfway. Scatter drops of different food coloring into each bag, and have the kids squish the bags to turn the mixture different colors.(read more)


Sticker Dots

We all know that young kids love playing with stickers, but the problem is that they really do stick to everything and it's often hard to peel them off. Your floors, walls and furniture pay the price. What I do is buy lots of sheets of multi-colored sticker dots (the ones you can buy at Staples), and we play a game where my kids can put stickers on ...(read more)

Reusable Coloring Pages

Select a few pages from a coloring book. Laminate the pages (you can have them laminated for you at a local office supply store or you can purchase laminate sheets that don't require heat from your local drug store). Allow your child to use dry erase markers to color the pictures. Then, when they are through, you can rinse the page off in the sink or wipe ...(read more)

Being Savvy Today

Tips for Choosing "After-Preschool" Activities and Classes


More and more, it seems, there are so many different kinds of activities and classes geared to the little ones. Deciding which ones to try and which to pass on sometimes gets confusing. There are all the wonderful music classes that encourage you to bring your baby before

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