Colorwheel Flowers Art Lesson




These happy colorwheel flowers were a perfect introduction to art for my Kinders. Drawing with pastels, painting with puck tempera and creating dots, lines, and patterns with black and white paint covered many art standard basics.

Here’s what we did:

Rainbow flower art project teaches painting techniques, radial symmetry and the color wheel

Using a black oil pastel on large paper (18″ x 24″), Kinders drew a circle in the middle of the paper. Then, they drew a larger circle around the first circle. The next circle got a bit wobbly and then the final circle had some bumps or wiggles. It was fun seeing what kind of line the kids made for their final or outsides line. Many didn’t associate the concentric circles with a flower so the lines were varied.

Rainbow flower art project teaches painting techniques, radial symmetry and the color wheel

The thing I love about painting with Kinders is that you know they can’t paint inside the lines. It just isn’t possible at this stage so expectations are based on creating a happy experience and not perfect results. I showed the kids how to paint the colors of the rainbow with one Kinder class, but noticed that it was hard for Kinders to keep the order straight. So I abandoned the rainbow and invited all colors to the flowers.

This was so much easier.

For the final step (usually the second session), children painted dots, patterns, outlines and generally anything they wanted with black and white liquid tempera paint. I love this final step since it pulls all the colors together.

I will confess to cutting out the final project for one class but the other classes will cut out their colorwheel flowers on their very own.

Aren’t these happy?

Rainbow flower art project teaches painting techniques, radial symmetry and the color wheel

Book Suggestions:

The Dot by Peter Reynolds

The Rainbow Book by Kate Ohhrt


What do you think?

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  • Mrs.C

    Very pretty Patty! ( pinned this one! )My Kinders did a colorwheel sunflower in the beginning of the school year and i had them color in a color wheel that became the center of the flower. I wanted to see if they would follow the colors of the color wheel on display or go their own way… I wanted them to use each of the colors we talked about but was not concerned if they would have them in order. Several did make sure they colored their center in to match my color wheel on display but many just colored each pie shape in randomly picking and choosing their colors at whim. The free artistic spirit of the 5 year olds( and a couple of 4’s) took over and I can’t complain about that because really I want to foster that creative spirit and not stifle it… the lesson did give me valuable data on many aspects of how ready my Kinders were for different types of art instruction and helped me to know where to move forward to in my first unit! 🙂 I’m sure your lesson did the same for you!

  • dgraziano

    It’s cute, but it doesn’t tell me about how many kinders you could or should do this with. I’m also not sure this is a good idea at the beginning of the school year. I guess I need more information.

    • Mrs. P

      I’m doing it with groups of 26 kindergartners, with a total of 125 over my week. I’ve been painting since the second week of school. It’s working for me!

  • Hilary L Hahn

    Tomorrow, I will be painting color wheel’s inspired by Hilma af Klint with my TK and K artists. I knew I wanted their wheels to be inspired by organic shapes and flowers. I’m going to lean into this process with some color mixing and tempera cakes. I like the way the kids drew their flowers organically using circles and wavy lines. We don’t have a lot of artist storage, so we will likely keep them 12″ x 12″ max. maybe 15″ x 15″

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