Wednesday, March 9, 2011

The White Week

Inspired by a wonderful book by Susan Striker Young at Art: Teaching Toddlers Self-Expression, Problem-Solving Skills, and an Appreciation for Art, I've decided to start exploring colors with Kitten one by one. It will probably take us longer than one week to explore each color but I will combine it for you in one post. Only after 3 days Kitten started saying the word "white" and identifying it everywhere. She is really into colors lately, so I think it is good timing for us.

We started with drawing with white pencil on black paper (I taped it to the table to stop it from moving around).
She was pretty surprised that she did not see anything on white paper!

We also painted with white poster paint on black paper.
Explored different kitchen tools as painting instruments (also white!)
Printed with bottle cap
And used a sponge brush.

Then the other day we made a collage on (you guessed it!) black paper using white school glue, cotton balls and scrap paper. I put glue in a bottle cap and gave her cotton swabs for glue application. This is our setup.
Kitten really preferred to use her fingers to apply glue. She thought it was paint and refused to stick anything to it, despite me showing her. May be next time.
This is the moment she realized that her fingers are a sticky mess (the girl hates being dirty!), asking for a wet paper towel.
Ahh, all is good. This is actually her favorite part of any painting activity - wiping her hands clean.

We also did a "white hunt" around the house. Kitten really did not understand what I wanted from her but she was excited to announce one found object after another white.

We played with white pipe cleaners, twisting them into shapes. Kitten was very amused by this possibility. For about 5 seconds… Oh, well, you don't try, you don't know what they enjoy doing.

I found every opportunity to say "Look, white …" or ask her about white objects what color they are. We also ate some white food but I never took a picture of it. Here are some white foods that you may want to arrange in a "white meal" - cauliflower, chicken, rice, white bread, sour cream, milk, marshmallows, sugar (I arranged a white bread - sour cream - sugar sandwich for Kitten, she LOVED it).

Now moving on to black color.


  1. Wow, this is awesome! I really liked the idea of collecting white things around the house. Children usually love treasure hunting, right? And she will figure out what you want from her soon enough, I am sure :) Are you going to give her different colors paper with matching pencils every time you start a new color? So she doesn't see orange on orange and such? This "disappearing" color sounds like a good idea with teaching contrasts, I think.

  2. Thank you, thank you, it is nice to have at least one devoted reader, I can always count on you to give me a pat on the back :) I like your idea about disappearing colors, have to check what color paper I have.

  3. I am your very devoted reader too! I check this blog almost every day. Just because I don't comment everything doesn't mean I don't care, you never respond to my comments anyway, so I don't get reinforced :) I like the idea of exploring one color at a time too, I think she will remember them better that way, than if you just spilled all sorts of colors in front of her, although I wonder if she will still get confused by the 10th color, like with the names of all of her aunts :) What black foods are you giving her now? And I can't believe that she still doesn't know what glue is, with her crafty mother. You should show her how cool it is!

  4. I try to respond to everything unless it is just an "I like it" kind of comment (which is nonetheless very pleasant to read :) ). Comments give ME a reinforcement to write and I like them very much, so comment, don't hesitate! Glue can be kind of messy, so I tried to put it off a bit. And for black foods you would have to wait till the big reveal post :P (the truth is I only came up with a couple so far).

  5. Ewww, are you gonna give licorice to the poor child? Did you remember black beans and black plums and dark chocolate and blackberries? ;)))

  6. and also, black mushrooms, raisins, sunflower seeds poppy seeds? :)) (Sorry if I just ruined the fun for you, by the way) SPOILER SPOILER SPOILER ALERT

  7. Thanks, most of these things were on my mind already. And the words "spoiler alert" are supposed to be the first ones, not the last :P