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As parents we have a lot of questions in regards to our children. When to start this? How to long to do that? When should they be able to do this? All of these are great questions that we should be asking if we want to be intentional on our motherhood journeys. These questions are no different when it comes to the many subjects involved in early childhood education. Let’s jump into the subject of how to teach primary colors to preschoolers.

When to Teach Primary Colors to Preschoolers?

When is the best time to start teaching colors to preschoolers? Babies are able to begin to recognize colors by the age of 18 months. Around this time your child will also be able to start noticing differences in shapes and sizes as well.

It will take sometime for your child to be able to name them. Use this this time to start introducing color terminology to your child. For example, “This is the color red”. “The ball is blue”.

As they’re playing point out the names of the colors of the toys. Or as you’re reading together, identify the colors of different items on the pages. The options are endless!

By the time your toddler is around three years old they will be able to begin to identify and name colors independently. This is the ideal time to start to introduce more activities that will help you teach your preschooler primary colors.

How to Teach Colors to Preschoolers

preschooler doing fun activity to learn primary colors

When teaching your preschooler colors I would like to recommend starting with one color at a time. This is because identifying colors is a complex task for children. At this age they are just reaching the cognitive capabilities to distinguish colors, shapes and textures, so one color at a time is sufficient at this stage.

I like to start out with the basic primary colors: red, yellow and then blue. These colors are bright and most of the time appealing to the eye. After your toddler has a good handle on one, then you can move on to the next! Before you know it, your preschooler will know the entire rainbow!

Activities to Teach Colors

There are SO many activities to help you teach your preschooler colors. I love books that are all about colors. This gives your child ample opportunities to associate objects with the color you are working on. You can also use other tools and activities such as:

  • songs
  • videos
  • blocks
  • puzzles
  • crafts (ex: making rainbows out of different materials)
  • crayons
  • markers
  • flashcards
  • matching games
  • sorting
  • I Spy
  • Painting
  • Coloring

As you can see there are so many games and activities that will help your preschooler learn colors while having fun! Learning associated with play is one of the best ways for children to learn. This type of learning increases attentiveness and comprehension.


In conclusion, teaching primary colors to preschoolers does not have to be a dreadful experience. By using the right techniques along with fun games and activities conquering this subject can be a breeze.

Learning colors has many benefits outside of just knowing colors. When your preschooler can recognize and identify colors they are also gaining skills such as: vocabulary, memory, reasoning and abstract thinking.

I always like to remind parents while there are average ages linked with developmental milestones, each child is unique with their own learning styles and abilities. Please be patient and always remember to have fun!

What are some of your favorite games and activities for teaching colors? I would love to hear from you! Leave them in the comments!