A few weeks ago, I decided to change our treasure basket to reflect the primary colors (red, yellow, and blue) over the next few weeks. The plan is to have just one color in the treasure basket for two weeks and then switch to the next color. The last two weeks were red and yesterday I put out a yellow treasure basket. (BTW – I only keep one treasure basket out at a time.) After the two weeks with the yellow treasure basket are done I’ll set out a treasure basket filled with blue items.
The point of having a treasure basket filled with just one color at a time is to introduce the child to that color in a variety of materials.
When I present the activity, I set the basket on the mat and tell Joey that, “This is a red treasure basket. Everything in this basket is the color red.”
Then I set the basket to the right side of the mat and begin to take the items out of the basket one at a time. As I take each item out of the basket, I say what it is “This is a red flashlight” and then briefly describe the object. I do this with each object until they are all on the mat. Then, I invite Joey to discover the objects on his own.
After this the treasure basket is left on the shelf and he takes it out when he wants to work with it. Every few days I’ll pull the basket out again and repeat the above process, so that he can hear the name of the color and associate it with what the color looks like.
Here is what our primary color treasure baskets look like:
For Extension 1 on this activity, after each of the two weeks I’ll set out a treasure basket with objects of all three colors. Repeating the process above, I’ll emphasize the different colors of each object. For this basket, I’ll put in 4-5 items of each color making sure they are the same objects that were in the original treasure basket of their color.
For Extension 2, I’ll take a 2-3 items of two colors from the treasure basket and put them into a smaller basket as well as two sheets of paper (laminated) that correspond with the two colors. The goal of the extension is for the child to sort the objects by color and setting them on the correct sheet of paper.
For Extension 3, I’ll do the same as Extension 2 but add all three colors from the basket (2-3 items of each color) and the corresponding sheets of paper. So then, the child will be idenifying and sorting colors by object.