While the leaves in Pensacola haven’t started to turn colors yet, fall is still a good time to teach the basic concepts of the color wheel, secondary colors, and analogous color schemes. Analogous colors are those that are next to each other on the color wheel. Fall trees use the analogous scheme of yellow, orange and red. Trees can also use a complimentary color scheme of green and red.
The color wheel shows that there are three primary colors; red, blue and yellow. These colors can be mixed to make secondary colors; orange, green and purple. When secondary colors are mixed with a primary color they make tertiary colors such as yellow-green, blue-green or red-orange.
This project makes the student use reasoning skills to determine which color belongs in each area. It can be done with colored pencils, crayons or water color paint, depending on what type of paper is used to make copies of the pattern. It is appropriate for students in third grade and older.
To make the pattern, right click on the photo and choose “save picture as”. Insert the picture into a Word document, and drag the corners until it takes up the full page. You can also make your own pattern by cutting a simple leaf pattern from tag board or an old file folder. Trace around the leaf several times, overlapping the areas.
Introduce the activity by telling the students that they are in an imaginary forest. The trees in this forest are made of plastic, and the leaves are transparent, like colored cellophane. When the leaves fall on top of each other, the colors appear to mix. Demonstrate this by holding up pieces of colored cellophane or thin tissue paper, and then overlapping the sheets to see how the colors appear to mix.
The students should color in the areas so that if a yellow leaf falls on top of a red leaf, the overlapping area is orange. If a green leaf falls on top of a red or orange leaf, the overlapping area should be brown or gray. Each leaf should be a different color.
Sunshine State Standards
VA.A.1.2.3 Knows the effects and functions of using various organizational elements and principles of design when creating works of art.
- The student chose a different primary or secondary color for each of the leaves.
- The student correctly chose secondary and tertiary colors for the overlapping areas.
- The student colored in the areas neatly.
- The student completed the page.