Thursday, August 21, 2008

Homeschool Thursday- Updated

Here is Emma checking out the glorious array of colors. She couldn't wait to get her hands in that stuff! In case you were wondering, they kept the colors separate for, ohhhhh about .005 seconds! They actually messed it up on purpose!! Even the big girls enjoy playing with the rice.
I look at the bag today there are 100 1/4 cup servings in a 10lb bag. If I sweep up a 1/4 cup everyday one bag should last........ at least a month maybe even two. But after a while we would have to add more. Which means more beautiful colors!!! Hooray!


I ran across this fun activity quite by accident. We are using Spelling Power this year for our spelling, and one of the things that they recommend is writing your words in/on something textured, like rice. After Mekala practices her words we let Emma have some fun in the rice.

She has a lot of fun with it. And while I was searching the Internet looking for fun pre-school ideas I discovered that teachers color it and put it in their "discovery centers". Because I needed something to keep the babies busy while I school the big girls I was all over this idea.

Some of you may be well versed in coloring rice and the likes, but I had to look it up and no one had pictures, so I provided some. We had a lot of fun making colored rice, it also is a great way to teach primary colors and mixing colors.

There are two ways to color rice.
1. Liquid Water Color
2. Food Coloring & Alcohol

I will cover both ways (not that they are too different, but.....)
You will need rice (I bought a ten pound bag, but any amount will do), baggies and your coloring choice. I measured out 1 & 1/2 cups of rice and put it in the baggie. Note: if you are mixing you can get away with regular bags, but if your toddler is mixing I recommend freezer bags to cut down on tears and spills. Emma went through 3 regular baggies...... on one color.

Then you squirt in your liquid water color. Here, I am mixing green and blue for a pretty turquoise color. The more you use the richer your color will be, and the less white rice you will have. Mekala made yellow, Hannah - green, Sarah - Orange and Emma - Olive.

Zip the bag closed and start mixing. Yes I know it is almost too easy to go to all this trouble, but what can I say I love blogging, colors and pictures, so I couldn't resist. You can see here how there are white pieces left, it makes a pretty look.

Ta - Da. There you have it. These are all the colors we made from the Liquid water colors. Which you can order online from Discount School Supplies. Click here for Discount's web site There is tons of cool stuff you can do with it. And as we experiment we will share.

Here are the Food coloring bags. If you are in a hurry, or on a budget Food Coloring is great (I bought the NEON colors and boy do the colors POP). Put a tsp of Alcohol and your desired amount of food coloring in the bottom of a baggie, add 3/4 cup of rice and seal bag. I doubled the recipe so I would have the same amount of each color.

One of the downfalls of using the food coloring method is, you have to let it dry and it stinks. I put it on wax paper in a cookie sheet and let it sit out for a few hours. And in food coloring vs watercolor battle..... watercolor is washable, food coloring is not.

Our complete color wheel (sort of).

There is the finished product. all lined up and out of the baggies. WAAAY COOL. Fifteen colors, and ten pounds of rice waiting for a textile adventure with Sarah and Emma, and I'm sure Mekala and Hannah too ;)

Add a few utensils and we hopefully have hours of discovery fun waiting for the babies. Some of the bonuses of rice are that it is easy to sweep up, unlike sand, but is just as fun to pour and mix. Also if they get tired of it in a few days, we can pour it in to big bags and put something else in the "discovery center". (aka large cheep tub from Target)

I 'll let you know how it goes later, and how long they will keep the colors separated. And I'll also share some of the other cool things we do in our discovery center when we get tired of the rice.


Tressa said...

That looks like SOOO much fun. I like all the colors mixed up. Easy on the eyes!

I thik we will have to try it out soon. We love playing in rice, I just hate how it ends up E.V.E.R.Y.W.H.E.R.E. But its worth the great experience!

Kelly said...

You are so creative - looks colorful and fun!

Pink & Green Mama said...

WOW!! WE have rice boxes in our house and I have liquid watercolors in my I want to try this one out!

Pink & Green Mama said...

Well we did it and we love it!! I even linked back to you here on my blog when I posted about it today!! : ) Thanks for such a fun project!

Morgan said...

so cool! What a great idea!

mamateach said...

After we did this I just had to link you in on my blog because it was so awesome. Thanks so much you are greatly creative, God has blessed you well. Have a wonderful evening.

aroundtheworldin40weeks said...

AMAZING!!! What a fabulous idea.

Crayon Couture said...

Love this! We did it today and it was a total hit! Wonderful tutorial, I shared and linked back to you on my blog.

Katarina said...

I loved this tutorial and i'm already a fan of your blog.. and a follower, of course ;-)

I would also like to introduce you to my blog:

Hope you'll follow back!! :-)


Stephanie said...

Very pretty activity!!

Mrs. Haid said...

I made this tonight for my toddler. I hope he is not too young to appreciate this! I know I am too cranky to appreciate mud the way he does, so hopefully this is a compromise!

Amanda said...

Neat idea. You could also put the colored rice in old soda bottles and make "I spy" bottles. The colored rice would make looking for the hidden items more interesting.

Mary Schannen said...

Can't wait to try this! Thanks!

handmadecreativity said...

Hi, I'm Taced from Italy. I linked your post in my new blog

It will appear the 28/07/11.
If you want, visit may blog (you can also subscribe to receiv a email so you will know when the post will be published).
Thank you for your tutorial!
Bye bye, Taced

handmadecreativity said...

Hi... this is the post:

See you, Taced

Maria said...

Love this. You inspired me and we made ours today! Thanks :)

mideastmom said...

Okay, *so* random: a college friend linked a list of "sensory tubs" on Pinterest that I was scrolling through. I saw "Forester Clan" and thought, there's no way . . . very small world.

I was looking for "tot tray" ideas ala Tressa, so this kind of came full circle (first comment on this post :-). I think we might get to this one, too.

Jennifer said...

I think I may have everything on hand for this. Thanks for sharing! I'm following your blog now.

Anonymous said...

would this work with beans... like white beans, thinking of something a bit bigger to use... thanks!

Tracy said...

Does anyone know if the rubbing alcohol method is safe if ingested by mistake? My twins are just 15 months old and EVERYTHING goes in the mouth!

micheleh16 said...

We use white vinegar instead of alcohol and it works great and is non toxic!

healthy women said...

wow very creative and colorful idea..can't wait to try it once..thnx for sharing this idea..
lemon rice recipe

Birdee0602 said...

Does the color transfer to little hands?

Julie Thoms said...

We love rainbow rice! I use food coloring and 1 tsp of vinegar then put it on a cookie sheet in a warm oven for about 20 minutes to dry it. It feel good on your hands when it's warm!