Friday, July 6, 2012

An accidental rainbow

Our Fourth of July celebration was memorable; we gathered with friends, cooled off in the pool, ate till we were stuffed, and watched the fireworks erupt in the sky.

We always show our participation in the celebration of this American summer holiday by decorating our lives in red, white, and blue.  It's also a good time to talk about why we use these colors with our older son, as we see these combinations of color everywhere this time of year.

This year, when we picked up patriotic decorations, Aidan noticed the water beads at the store.  He is no stranger to water beads, he raved about them to me the first time he played with them at his preschool, but I had not given him the opportunity to play with them at home yet.  Believing that it's never too late to do anything, we took some home in the hues of red, and blue.  I could not find white water beads, so we purchased clear ones.

If by some chance you haven't heard of water beads by now, also called water pearls, they are found in the floral section of craft stores, and have become increasingly popular among young children, and adults as an irresistible addition to sensory play.

I set up an invitation for Aidan to explore the patriotic colored beads in a cheerful yellow tray I found.  I wasn't even thinking about the combination of primary colors that were being thrown together until Aidan started pointing out additional colors to me.  "Look mom!  I see green ones!"

"And purple too!"

I swirled some red water beads closer to the edge of the yellow tray, and quizzed Aidan about what color he saw red and yellow make.  "Ooooo!  Orange!"

Color mixing, is the most simple science experiment you can do with a child.  The fascination with the change never gets old when you find different ways to show it, whether it's paint, crayon, tissue paper, or water beads!

I added props that reflected an underwater theme, making a "sea" of colors.  The discussion during our play ended up being more about mixing colors, than our country's colors.  Not a surprise, when a rainbow accidentally gets mixed up in your tray!

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  1. i love this post, what a great way of teaching colour mixing, and its brilliant that it was accidental.

    1. Thanks! I honestly wasn't thinking about it as I was dumping them in the bin, it was cool to get surprised by something so simple!

  2. Very cool! I love the concept of an accidental rainbow!!! And LOVE water beads! Thank you for sharing at The Sunday Showcase!

  3. I love it! I especially like the props you added like the treasure chest. How fun. Please stop by today and link this post to the first Artsy Play Wednesday on Capri + 3. It is a brand new linky featuring posts about arts, crafts and play activities.

    : 0 ) Theresa

  4. These are so cool, I think I'll have to try some with my boys. Thank you for sharing at Saturday Show and Tell! I hope you'll be back this week.

    1. Thanks Mackenzie, those things are irresistible to adults even!

  5. I love the way it formed a rainbow! I've featured this on the Sunday Showcase


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