Complementary Colors

Opposite Day! Introducing complementary colors! I started out by saying silly things that are opposite from what was true. So if it’s sunny outside I’ll say it’s raining. If I see a kid smiling I’d say he’s sad. Then the kids would quickly say some things that are opposite to get them excited.

You can do this as a review of complemtarty colors or to learn them from scratch. If they’ve learned it before you can point to a color wheel and see who remembers. I use 3 fun examples for complementary colors to help them remember:

Green/Red = Christmas

Purple/Yellow = Lakers

Orange/Blue = Mets/Knicks/Islanders

This really helps students remember make sure to provide a visual of all 3.

I also do a color strip game. Students receive all 6 colors in strips of paper you can quickly chop using a paper cutter and paper clip each set together for easy distribution. Ask the students to only wave the answer and not say it outloud. What’s the opppsite of green, they’d wave the red strip! Then you can let the students play teacher and call out the colors. Later on you can use these strips even more grouping the primary, secondary, warm, cool and arraigning them into rainbow order. They love playing the game as review.

The Opposite picture is further review. Make a list on the board of everything that’ll go into our picture: sun, sky, grass/tree tops, mountains, brick house/building, and tree trunk. Ask students, what color would you normally color in a sky? Blue! But it’s Opposite Day so what will we use instead? Orange! They can use their strips again here. Show students photographs of tree trunks where the wood can look a little orange. This will give you you’re blue opposite. Mountains can look purple in certain times of day in the distance, find an image of this and you have your purple opposite.

Once this is established, they can draw their pictures in pencil first. As they become ready to color make sure they have a cheat sheet list of all the opposites for reference.

When white comes up, like clouds, ask them what they think the opposite of white is, they already know it’ll be black! Outline with black sharpie!

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