Color Strip Match

  • clothespins or popsicle sticks
  • glue
  • paint swatches

Color Strip Match

WGBH/Denise Nelson

We use color to describe things in our world (a green leaf) and to communicate important information (red means stop; green means go). We also use color to express moods or emotions (feeling blue means feeling sad). So, it is important for your child to be able to recognize and name colors. 

The next time you are at the hardware store or paint supply store, gather a bunch of free paint swatches. Choose a variety of darker shades and lighter tints of each color.

  • Prepare for the activity by cutting a 1-inch square from the corner of each color swatch.
  • Help your child glue each small square on the end of a clothespin. As you do, talk about and compare the colors and things that are the same colors.
  • Have your child choose her favorite color square. Then invite her to find the large matching color swatch. If she gets an incorrect match, help her figure out why. For example ask, Is it too light? Is it too dark? Is it a different color?
  • Once she finds the match, she can clip the matching pieces together!

Color swatches are great for all kinds of activities, such as grouping colors, sorting from lightest to darkest, making color patterns, and making up fun names for each color, such as “bubblegum pink” or “muddy brown.”

Keep the swatches and squares in a box so your child can pull them out again and again.

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