Activity 1: What is colour?
Activity 2: Make a Rainbow
Activity 3: Make your own Paints
Activity 4: Cabbage Chemistry (KS2)
Activity 5: Learn about Holi Festival
Activity 6: Colour Code-Breakers (and reading an e-book)
Activity 7: Learn to Tie-Dye
Activity 8: What have I learnt?


Look around you. How many different colours can you see? But why exactly do we see colour?
Watch this video from Eureka! The National Children’s Museum where Professor Pumpernickel talks you through some experiments in his lab to help you understand

After you’ve finished watching, see if you can answer these questions.

The video talks you through two experiments that you can try at home. Here’s a re-cap of what you’ll need…



Watch the video again for instructions (at 5:00 minutes). As you’re doing the experiment, ask the following questions:

  • Before you put the sweets into the water, what happens to the light when it reaches the water? (it goes through the water)
  • Look at the coloured water. What is happening to the light? (It’s being reflected back to our eyes)
  • What is happening to the colour on the sweets when it mixes with the water? (It dissolves)
  • Why do we need to take the sweets out as soon as the water is coloured? (because otherwise the sweets will dissolve too!)



Watch the video again for instructions (at 8:00 minutes). As you’re doing the experiment, as the following questions:

  • Can your eyes keep track of all the separate colours?
  • Which colour do you see when all those colours have merged together?
  • Why do you see white? (because white light is made up of all the different colours)

Look around you, what colours can you see? Can you see anything which is reflecting light back into your eyes? Can you see anything that is absorbing all the light like a sponge?



Now it’s time to make your own rainbow at home. For best results, you need a mirror, a pan or a bowl of water, and some white paper (to ‘catch’ your rainbow).

Go to this website for instructions and diagrams.

If you don’t have a mirror that you can use, you can also create a rainbow using just a glass, some water, and either torchlight or sunlight.

Go to this website for instructions.

Once you have made your rainbow, see if you can find the seven main colours. How quickly can you say them without dropping a word?

Watch this two Dr. Binocs video which will help you to understand exactly what we mean by a ‘prism’.



Ever wondered what artists used before we had modern-day paints?
Go to this website from We the Curious and read about ‘temperas’ or pigments, that people used before oil-based paints were invented. Then learn how to make your own paints out of egg yolk and food powders from your kitchen.

Afterwards, try painting with your new pigments. How do the colours look? How does it feel to paint with them?

colours e


Behold the magic of the cabbage! Watch this video from Eureka! The National Children’s Museum and find out how you can do Chris’ experiment at home.

Now it’s your turn but make sure you do this with an adult as kitchen cleaners are toxic and can be dangerous. Use this worksheet to help you carry out your own experiment at home.

You can try experimenting with other liquids that you have in your kitchen too, and use the coloured pH scale on the last page of the worksheet to find out whether what you’re testing is more acidic or more alkaline. Keep a record of your findings on a piece of paper.


Go to this National Geographic Kids website and look at photos taken in India during Holi, known as the festival of colours.
Next, watch this Culture Groove video to find out how people celebrate Holi Festival in India, the history behind the festival, and follow Maya & Neel on their Holi adventure.

Next, watch this Culture Groove video to find out how people celebrate Holi Festival in India, the history behind the festival, and follow Maya & Neel on their Holi adventure.

Afterwards see if you can re-tell the story of Prahlad (the boy), The Evil King and Holika (the king’s sister). You could even find props around the house and act out the story.

Ask yourself these questions:

  • How would it feel to be at Holi celebrations?
  • What would it look like?
  • What colours would you see? How would you describe them?
  • What would you do if someone squirted you with a pichkari (water gun)?
  • What colours would you fill your water balloons with?


Try drawing Holi festival. You could splash paint on your paper to make your picture feel like Holi. 

This Activity Village website gives you a guide for how to use powder paints to make Painted People.

Imagine that you have just been to Holi festival. Use your imagination and write about your day, using lots of details.


colour codes e

1. Write the alphabet on a piece of paper
2. Use your pens and colouring pencils to assign a colour, or colour combination, to each letter
3. As you go through your colours, try and name each colour that you see. Use your imagination! For example, I think of the orange in the picture as ‘Carrot Orange’.
4. Once you have a colour or colour combination by each letter, your code is ready! Write a word or a sentence in your code. Give it to someone, along with the code-breaker sheet you have just made, and see if they can figure out what you have written.

Read a book

Read a story from home, or find an e-book on Oxford Owl:

Once you’ve chosen a book, read the story.

Ask and answer questions as you read. For example, “how does this character feel?”, “what do you think is going to happen next?”, “which words describe this place/character”, etc.


Choose some words from the story and see if you can spell them using your colour code!



**This project should be supervised by an adult as bleach is highly toxic***

The principles of tie-die are that material is wrapped and tied before being died, so that the colour only reaches certain parts of the material, creating a cool pattern. You can tie-dye white garments using water, vinegar and food colouring, and you can tie-dye coloured garments using bleach (*with adult supervision*).

Go to this website to find detailed instructions on how to tie-dye. First it tells you how to tie-dye white clothes using food colouring. Then scroll down to find out how to tie-dye coloured clothes using bleach. After that it gives you instructions on how to use natural dies. Remember to wear rubber gloves when you are handling bleach so that it doesn’t burn your skin.
This video will show you how to make four different patterns on your garments.

Have fun!


Draw 3 shapes (stars, circles, blobs) on a piece of paper. Write the following headings in each one for your child:

  • Things I’ve learnt this week
  • My favourite activity and why
  • What do I want to learn next?

Help your child to write some thing in each one, or let them fill them in.

shadow write up