Hello warm color circles!

art project 3-6 year oldIn our Chagalls class for 3-6 year olds, we use this multi-step project as one of the many ways we teach color mixing. With primary colors of red and yellow, the students create a palette reminiscent of the autumn leaves outside.

Age Level: 3 – 6 years


  • Reinforce primary colors
  • Introduce color mixing
  • Learn stamping with paint techniques
  • Encourage using recycled objects in art


  • Tempera paint: black, red, and yellow
  • Paint brushes
  • Small paper plates (to use as paint palettes)
  • White Card stock, 9 x 12
  • Assortment of different sized caps and other objects for printing circles: laundry detergent lids, soda bottle lids, shaving cream caps, toilet paper rolls, etc

Teacher Preparation:

  • Cover table in paper to prevent paint from getting on it
  • Put black paint on plates (one plate/palette for every 2 students)
  • Put red and yellow paint on plates (one plate/palette for every 2 students)
  • Create labels with student’s names for back of artworks
  • Place printing objects on table (or in a tray) for children to use
  • Create sample project


Show children a sample project. Demonstrate the first step: how to print circles with the objects on the table. Encourage them to make smaller circles inside bigger ones, and to overlap circles.

(We do this project as a two-step project during the same class, with the circle prints happening near the beginning of the session, then moving on to another activity. The circles printed in this first step need time to dry before the next step. If needed, the instructors can also blot the prints to help them dry more quickly. The project could also be spread over a couple class sessions.)

Next, talk to the students about the three primary colors: red, yellow and blue. Explain we will be working with warm colors today, red and yellow.   Demonstrate first painting some circles yellow.

the messy artist art studio for kidsThen paint some other circles red. Finally, mix the red and yellow together on their palette to make a new color: orange. Paint the remaining circles with the orange paint.

new jersey kids art class circle stampingThis project is always a lot of fun for the students, and they often want to keep painting when their circles are filled. We give them plain white paper and let them keep on painting with their orange paint if time allows.color mixing for preschoolers


Author: hellokidsart

The Messy Artist is a special place to create art. We offer year-round art classes for children 18 months through adulthood. In addition to art classes from September through June, we offer summer art camp and Drop-In and Play art activities for kids between our regular sessions. Our bright, colorful studio is also the perfect place for a kid’s birthday party! The Messy Artist children’s art center was created and designed by Owner/Director Donna Bernstein, a professional educator and artist. The curriculum is inspired and guided by Donna’s teaching experience and research in child development, as well as her passion for art. At The Messy Artist, art lessons for kids entertain and enrich their brains, bodies, and hearts.

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