Everyone knows rainbows and leprechauns go hand in hand when you’re talking about St. Patrick’s Day. Last night the boys got a visit from a sneaky lil’ leprechaun who turned their bathwater green! Then this morning the boys woke up to this:
Someone had strung rainbow streamers all along the hallway! When M opened his door we heard him exclaim excitedly, “look! A rainbow!” I got out of bed and joined him in the hallway, trying to look as surprised as he was. When I asked M who he thought was responsible for this mess, he immediately said, “a leprechaun!” See? Sometimes three year-olds DO pay attention to what you say! 😉
After breakfast, I played a couple of rainbow songs I found on Youtube to familiarize the boys with the colours of the rainbow. Personally, I like this one the best (even though they substitute purple and pink for indigo and violet), but M prefers this one because of the animals.
After learning about the seven colours of the rainbow, I filled some squirt bottles full of water, a teaspoon of cornstarch (to thicken it a bit), and some food colouring. Then I bundled the boys up in their snowsuits and we headed outside to the backyard to paint the white, pristine snow all the colours of the rainbow!
The boys turned this:
They had a great time transforming the white canvas of the snow into a rainbow explosion!
Rainbow Science Experiments
M and I made our own indoor rainbow by following this Youtube video. Normally I would just go outside and spray some water into the air with a hose, but it’s winter here so that wasn’t going to happen! I don’t have any pics of M and I doing this experiment because we were in the dark in the bathroom, but I can tell you that it worked! :). I explained to M that white light is actually made up of the seven colours of the rainbow. We are able to see a rainbow after it rains because water bends the light and separates it into it’s seven colours. I’m not sure he’ll remember the science behind the experiment, but if he’s able to comprehend that white light is made up of the seven colours of the rainbow, I’ll be happy :).
We also conducted the milk and food colouring experiment. I learned this experiment from a teacher colleague years ago. All you need is a shallow bowl (or plate) of milk, some food colouring, and some liquid dish soap.
First, M put a few drops of food colouring into the centre of the milk.
Then he squeezed some liquid dish soap into the centre (M went a bit overboard, you only need a tiny bit!). Watch what happens!
The dish soap weakens the chemical bonds that hold the proteins and fats in the milk.The soap molecules then race around to join up with the fat molecules of the milk, causing the colours to twist and swirl.
Rainbow Sorting and Graphing with Skittles
For this activity we used:
- a bag of Skittles
- paper (for your sorting mat)
- pencil crayons, crayons, or felts (red, orange, yellow, green, purple)
- paint dabbers (optional)
- Skittles Graph Sheet
First, I divide a piece of paper into 5 sections and wrote the names of the colours (red, orange, yellow, green, and purple) onto each section, using the corresponding coloured felt. Then I had M sort the Skittles by colour onto his sorting mat. I should also mention I made sure there were no more than 11 Skittles of each colour so it would fit on my graph (I thought I had made 10 rows on my graphing sheet, but it turns out I miscounted and ended up with 11 instead. I changed this on the printable Skittles Graph Sheet so there are 10 rows rather than 11). I didn’t put numbers on the side of the printable sheet just in case you would like to use more Skittles and count by 2’s instead. I also made sure he had a different amount of each colour as well.
When he was finished sorting, I gave him the graph sheet and had him count how many red skittles he had. Then, using the corresponding coloured paint dabber (you could also colour in the squares using crayons, pencil crayons or felts), M dabbed the correct number of red skittles onto his graph.
After he had finished graphing all of the colours, I asked M to tell me which colour of Skittles had the most, and which had the least, just from looking at his graph.
I was REALLY impressed with M’s self-control. I could tell he was itching to shovel a handful of Skittles into his mouth during this entire activity, but he refrained. Of course, I did let him devour the Skittles once he was finished!
And that’s how I kept my bugs busy today, learning and playing with the colours of the rainbow!