Spinning Color Wheel

What You Need:

  • White paper
  • Cardboard
  • Glue
  • Scissors
  • Pencil
  • Hole punch
  • Markers
  • Yarn

What You Do:

  1. Check out the Color Spectrum worksheet as a template for this activity. It has some awesome facts about colors that your child might not be familiar with. Did they know that all the colors together make up white light? If this fact seems too difficult for them to grasp, don't worry! That's what this activity is meant to illustrate!
  2. Have your child glue the white paper onto the cardboard. Cut out a circle from the cardboard. Make sure the circle is at least six inches in diameter.
  3. Tell your aspiring scientist to divide the circle into six wedges. Color the wedges in this order: red, blue, green, yellow, orange, purple.
  4. Use the hole punch to make two holes in the center of the circle. Thread a three foot piece of yarn through the holes and then tie the yarn into a loop.
  5. Wind things up. Twirl the yarn like you would turn a jump rope. Once the yarn is tightly twisted, pull your hands apart, then bring them back together. Continue bringing your hands in and out as if you are playing an accordion. If your cardboard is too light, the winder will flop not spin. To fix this issue, take apart the winder and layer the cardboard.
  6. As the wheel begins to spin faster, watch as the colors begin to blur together. Ask your child what color they see. Depending on the quality of the marker shades you used, you should see a light grey. The goal, of course, is to see white, but that might take some more experimenting.

Encourage your child to try out some more color combinations on their color wheel. If they try alternating two primary colors like blue and yellow, what color do they predict will show?

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