Sunday, December 6, 2015

1st Grade Color Wheel Umbrellas

Artwork by Rebekah

By now, our first graders have learned that primary colors make secondary colors when mixed together.  This lesson throws the next level of colors, those created when a primary and a secondary color are mixed, into the color equation.

We start by lightly tracing a circle tracer and then dividing the circle into eighths with four intersecting lines (good fractions practice!)  Before telling them what they are drawing, I have them connect the ends of their lines with straight or curving lines and guess what it might be,  Once the secret is discovered, they add a person beneath their umbrella and go over the whole drawing with a Sharpie.

We begin coloring the umbrella sections (with oil pastels because they mix so well) with the primary colors, making sure to leave at least one and no more than three uncolored sections between each.  Next, the students color in the appropriate secondary colors between their primaries. But that still leaves two uncolored sections.  Though, I don't teach the word "tertiary," the next level of colors on the color wheel, the students still learn that by mixing any two adjacent colors, they make a completely new one that isn't a primary or a secondary. Hopefully they also see that they can create an almost infinite number of colors beginning with just the primary colors.

We finish these artworks off by adding rain and puddles with white oil pastels and then painting the entire ground and sky with blue and purple liquid watercolors that I make from our dried out markers.  I think the results are worthy of a picture book story about a rainy day brightened by a colorful umbrella!

Artwork by Anya

Artwork by Camille

Artwork by Lukas

1 comment:

  1. I love this artwork for teaching the colour wheel. I'm going to do this with my class of 7 year olds - way down in New Zealand! And is raining at the moment so fits in nicely with the weather. Thanks for the great idea :)

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