Color Mixing

Color mixing is one of those projects that looks like simple fun at first glance (and it IS totally fun!), but is actually loaded with learning and developmental opportunities. Scientific concepts like creating a hypothesis and observation, art knowledge of primary colors and developmental areas of language and fine motor skills are all easily encompassed in this one simple project. And don’t forget the fun! My son was over the moon for this beautiful “science experiment”!

color mixing straighten crop


food coloring: red, yellow, blue


7 clear, kid- friendly containers (we used small mason jars)

medicine dropper or a spoon

Tray or large cake pan to contain spills


1. Fill three of your containers about half way with water and add a few drops of red, yellow and blue to each jar separately, making one jar of each color.

2. Fill another container partially with water. Mix colors in this jar using the medicine dropper and observe the changes to the clear water.

This activity can be as structured or unstructured as you like.  Since this was more of a focused lesson for us, we discussed the colors in the rainbow, looked at the colors we had to start with, and identified which colors were missing.  Then we used our prior knowledge of color mixing (thanks, Sesame Street!) to create the missing colors. After we had successfully created all the colors, I gave my son a container of water and let him mix to his heart’s content. Which of course ended up with blackish, murky water and a very happy little scientist!


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