Tot School: Colors Lesson Plan

You can teach colors to One Year Olds using fun activities and games.
Colors is one of the first lessons that you can start when trying to get your toddler ready for pre-k.
Start with the basic colors and then move up, adding more as your little learner gets more comfortable.

The lessons shared here are part of the One Year Old Curriculum called My First School or inspired by some of the activities there.

The activities are meant to be simple and reduce the amount of set up and materials.

Areas of Development for this week:

How to start teach colors to One Year Olds

Grasping colors is easier if you break it up in a few simple activities.

Create activities around each color. I used to do a full 2-3 weeks or even a month of activities for each color before introducing others. It just made grasping the concept easier once the first primary colors are mastered the rest were easy to learn. 

Download the FREE Guide “How to Start Teaching Colors” >>

Activities for This Week

Objective: Introduction to primary colors

Supplies for this activity:  flashcards, color book, food coloring

One of my favorite ways to first introduce a subject is through a book, flashcards and a sensory activity . (I have build a library of sensory edible-safe activities if you need inspiration!)

Step 1: For a quick review, you are going to show each color flashcard and name each color.

Step 2 Place your flashcard on top of the table (tape it so it doesn’t move) You can use construction paper as an option.

Hand each puzzle piece one by one to your toddler and show them how it matches each of the colors. You can make up songs, and just play with the pieces.

Mama, follow your toddler lead and repeat the color of the pieces you hold, or that he/she hands over to you.

Repeat this type of activities of matching colors. We love using the color matching printables pack.

Learn More about the Learn Colors Printable pack >>

Learn about the Learn Colors Kit>>



Objective: Discover new textures and colors through different household supplies

Supplies for this activity: Basket, Color items (safe to explore independently)

Grab a basket and collect toys and household items of the same color. Make sure these are baby safe and your baby can explore independently what each one has. Mention the color of the item as they grab it, “that is a red cube, red, the color is red”

Allow for plenty of independence play as they explore the basket.

Repeat with different colors

Learn how to make other types of Montessori treasure baskets>>

Objective: language development

Supplies for this activity: Carton of milk, cookie monster printable, tape, scissors

Create the cookie monster DIY toy and  color the cookies choosing different colors.

Feed cookie monster the color chips and repeat the name of each color as you feed the monster each color cookie.

Get the FREE Cookie Monster Template and Tutorial >>


Objective: Learn about light and colors through sensory play

Supplies: 3 water bottles, food coloring in red, yellow, blue and green.

Color sensory bottles are a great opportunity to learn colors. I did this activity as part of a rainbow activity during Spring. 

Add one drop of food coloring to each bottle to create color sensory bottles. Glue the top to avoid spills.

Place the bottles againts the light by a window to discover their reflection on the floor.

Talk about the colors you see. Allow time for independent play and exploration.

Optional: You can add matching color glitter to the bottle for added interest.

Read more about this bottles, and why we love them for color recognition games >>

Objective: Use music and movement to learn colors

Materials: Color scarfs, music player

Use songs to repeat and label colors during playtime. It is important to start singing and showing the colors as you sing to encourage recognition.

I use scarfs during my circle time in class and the kids really enjoy them. It is a fun way to play with colors and music at the same time.

Get my favorite Nursery Rhyme Color Song List >>

Buy my favorite color scarfs (Amazon) >>

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