Sunday, 14 September 2014

Colour box 4

There are many ways to make color boxes. The easy way, the one I went for, is using paint chips. You can also paint, or, as Maria did, use embroidery thread!

The things you need to consider is the accuracy of the colours you want to achieve. There was no real red in my hardware store! Seb does not fail to tell me it's pink, orange or purple, it's not red. As this was my first material, I didn't know about the need to be accurate and, at the time, I didn't care. I just did what I liked with what I had. So, I warn you, colour box 4 is NOT montessori approved.
What I had was this
-unlimited number of paint chips borrowed from the shop.
-a bit of hard board I had once used for something else
-Stanley knife
- wooden pegs
Because I'm an enthusiastic, passionate person, who doesn't always think about how much effort goes into my ideas, I went way overboard in this project (I was also bored brainless after 7 days of quarantine with chickenpox).
the paint chips came in 2 cards of 3 shades per color. So, I had 6 shades per color. Different brands do differently. I picked, uhm, 14 colors. I think it took me 2 trips to be satisfied with the range. Also, this conveniently fitted my wood without leaving any waste (told you, I'm frugal). After much uhmming and ahhhing, I cut the chips into size, about 2 by 3 cm to perfectly fit the wood. I also cut little strips that I would glue on pegs.  The idea is to teach matching skills and finger strength at the same time. I also ended up cutting little circles, the size of the center of my sticky tape roll, about 1.5 cm diameter.
Then, I cut the wood to size using a Stanley knife.  I don't recommend this. It's just all I had at the time. Let me rephrase this: don't ever think cutting hard board with a Stanley knife is a good idea.  But it worked.
Montessori has one colour per bit of wood. I didn't know this at the time and did 6 shades of each colour per bit of wood. If Seb had been younger and less practised in colour, I would also have made one strip with just the dark colours. Like I said, I didn't follow montessori for this activity.
After I finished glueing all the things, I decided to put it to the test and pegged the 14 colours in 6 shades. That's 84 pegs! And you know what, it was bloody hard.  So the next step was to mark each colour with a number, both the pegs and the boards. I never got around to matching the circles.

How to introduce this to a 2.5 year old?
Of course, all at once. There is only one way to realise something doesn't work and that's by doing it. He couldn't peg. So it didn't take long for me to give up on that and to give him the circles. To my surprise he really liked it when I gave him one bit of wood, one colour with six shades. He was quite good at it too! Then I gave him cards I hadn't glued yet, of the darkest shades only, with the matching chips. He also liked that and was quite capable.
We talked about colour and shade. The rainbow order is a scientific fact, so I like to teach that (art conveniently uses it as well, of course. Each colour relates to the wave length of the photon). We talked about dark and light, darker and lighter. He caught on quickly, which either suggests my child is super gifted, or it's something you can start to teach earlier, whichever one you fancy.
At 2.8 years (that's 2 years and 8 months,  not 2 years and 8/10th of a year) I give him 6 colours and 36 circles to match. We usually do this together, which may be my child's quirkiness, and he usually gets to matching about 8-12 depending on his focus. Quite often he puts them on, then throws them away again, to put on others, so perhaps he does even 20! Clearly, though, he can recognise each colour and shade with ease. I'm rather stunned by this as some are quite close!
This is Seb, working hard.

No comments:

Post a Comment