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Color Sorting

Make patterns with different colored objects.


  • crayons
  • small building blocks
  • paint chips
  • buttons
  • small toys and other colorful objects
  • objects children can collect outside: pebbles, leaves, twigs
  • paper bowls, clear plastic cups, plastic containers, shoe boxes and tops, plastic bags (to hold the sorted objects)
  • construction paper, paper plates
  • glue and tape (for gluing/taping objects to paper so they can be displayed


This week, have children create different color patterns, focusing on contrasting colors. Examples of patterns using colors that stand out from each other:

  • black, yellow, black, yellow
  • blue, blue, orange, blue, blue, orange
  • green, green, red, red

Have them also create patterns of colors that blend together, which will also be explored this week:

  • blue, purple, blue, purple
  • light pink, dark pink, light pink, dark pink
  • black, brown, black, brown

Have children sort objects by color, after showing them the objects and containers. Encourage free exploration, offering children suggestions on days they need more guidance:

  • Crayons, buttons, paint chips: sort by single color; by shades, going from light to dark; by different light and dark colors (pinks, whites, yellows together, and browns and darks blues together); in patterns (blue shade, green shade, blue shade, etc., or light shade, dark shade, light shade).
  • Building blocks: sort in containers; build something of a single color; build something with two alternating colors
  • Leaves, pebbles, or twigs: arrange these by color or pattern, then tape or glue to a paper plate