Colour, Symmetry & Art Learning Story

This week’s classes were all about colours, symmetry, and creating beautiful art.

To get started, we used all those little muscles in our hands (which need to get stronger for things like cutting and writing) to create a play dough colour wheel.

Starting with just the 3 primary colours, children were challenged to create all the secondary and tertiary colours on the colour wheels provided.  As always, the kids interpreted the task in a myriad of ways, showing their unique interests and ways of learning.  Always the language and vocabulary enthusiast, Evelyn was curious to know what came after tertiary colours, so we all learned a new word:  quaternary!

Hannah, who is quite the artist, took her learning in an unexpected way, creating a rainbow of colours with the play dough to make a very Picasso-like portrait rather than using the colour wheel.

Then we moved on to a discussion about symmetry and thought about all the things we could see in our classrooms that were symmetrical.  Many of the children commented on symmetry in nature, and then we had a look at each others’ faces to observe the symmetry there.  Children were given coloured paper, scissors, and glue to have a go at making their own 3D symmetry sculptures.  This task was easily modified for younger learners to work with their grownup to create a 2D work of art that showed symmetry.


We ended the class by questioning if things were still beautiful even if they were asymmetrical.  Students looked at several Picasso paintings; some children were very interested in the bold colours and unexpected features while others said they didn’t think the pictures were very pretty.  Everyone then had a go at creating their own Picasso-style portrait!

There was lots of learning today, and the conversations about art were a great opportunity to notice that everyone views things differently, and that our differences are meant to be celebrated!

Small Poppies - Gifted Program for Children NZ

Small Poppies is an enrichment and programme for young, gifted learners aged 2-6 years old. We run classes during term time in Christchurch and Auckland.