Language Unit: Colors (red, yellow, blue, and black)
- Preschool-Kindergarten students
- Link meaning to new vocabulary
- Link new vocabulary to already existing schema
- Learn categorization
- Discriminate between different and same colors
- Increase speech/sign/fingerspelling vocabulary
- Reinforcement of question/answer discourse format
- Develop early literacy skills: printed words have meaning
Introduction and Motivation
Before beginning the unit:
- Send a note home to parents explaining what the students will be learning
- Ask them to dress their child in something red for the first day of the unit.
On the first day of the unit:
- Have many red objects visible in the classroom.
- For example: Teacher dresses all in red. Have a red tablecloth on a table with a red bowl and red apples in bowl.
- Ask children if they see something funny? Point to your clothes, the tablecloth, the bowl, and the apples until the children respond.
- Tell the children that these items are all the same color and that red is the name of the color.
- Write the word red on a chart; have the children select a red magic marker and color a swatch of red on the chart next the word.
Tell students what they will learn and why
- Tell them that they will be learning about the color red. Then they can use a new word when they communicate with friends and family, and they will also be able to read the word (spell and write also if students are six years old and above).
- Sign and/or say red and have students copy—help them with accurate signing and/or speech.
- Fingerspell the word for them—have them copy; then have them fingerspell on their own.
- Write the word on the board and tell them that this is the word for red.
- If you are using sign and/or speech, encourage the children to see the shape of the word as you say it (lipreading). Also encourage them to listen to the word and note that it is a short word—one clap (claps denote syllables).
- Put 5 –
6 objects in a bag (4 red and 2 others). Pull out an
- Ask: Is this red?
- Match to red swatch on chart and other red objects that you discussed in the introduction.
- If the object is red, put it into a red box.
- Continue with other objects.
(If your student(s) have some usable hearing, in all guided practice activities, encourage them to notice how the words/sentences look when lipreading and how they sound. If appropriate, present lipreading and auditory discrimination activities using the words and sentences from the unit.)
- Show the children other familiar red objects, for example, paper, crayon, various toys. Ask what the object is and elicit response.
- Ask the students to name the color and then write on the board/chart, a red paper or I have a red paper (depending on which is appropriate for your students).
- Say/sign the phrase/sentence, then have students say/sign it with you. Do the same for 2 or 3 more objects.
- Give each child a paper bag with a red object in it.
- Each child feels in bag. Ask: What do you have? Child responds with whatever he/she guesses the object is, then pulls out object.
- Ask: Were you right? What is that? and then, What color is (the car) ?
- Child responds. Confirm the child’s answer and write sentence on board: (child’s name) has a red car. Read to children.
- Children say and/or sign the sentence with you. Have them identify the word that says red. Encourage them to say/sign, and fingerspell the word.
- Repeat activity with all children.
- Children go on a scavenger hunt around the room for red objects that the teacher has previously “hidden.”
Ask: What did you find?
Elicit response: A red ball.
Reinforce response: Yes, you found a red ball!
Write on chart: (child’s name) found a red ball.
Read, sign/say the sentence and then ask the children to read it.
Encourage accurate signing and speech.
- Child draws and colors a picture of his/her favorite red object.
- Each child writes (or copies, if necessary) color word red below the picture.
- Save all the pictures. (Later the children will make books with their pictures.)
- Homework: Show children an empty bulletin board that has only the title Red on it.
- Tell them that they need to fill up the bulletin board with pictures of things that are red. Ask them to look in magazines at home and find 3 or 4 pictures of things that are red, cut them out, bring them to school the next day and put them on the bulletin board.
Review of previous work and introduction to new color concept
- Review concept of red by having children show and discuss their “red” pictures they brought from home and put them on the bulletin board.
- Use these color concepts in language experience stories.
concept development of yellow using steps similar to those
- Teacher demonstration/modeling
- Explain to students what they will learn and why
- Guided practice
- Independent practice
- Independent application
- At the end of the section on yellow, have each child produce a picture of favorite yellow object.
- Collect pictures to save for making their books.
visual and auditory differences, if appropriate.
- Review how red and yellow look when lipreading and how each sounds (red is short—one clap and yellow is longer—two claps).
each child a paper bag with a red or yellow hat made of
paper in it.
- Put up a sign on red paper that says “Red Hats” and a similar sign for the yellow group.
- Each child opens bag and says/signs, “I have a red (or yellow) hat” and then goes to correct group.
group and yellow group work together on problems.
- Each member of Red group makes and colors pictures of as many red objects as they can.
- Yellow group members make and color pictures of yellow objects.
- Each group will show their pictures to the other group and discuss them.
- For the next activity, give each group red or yellow math markers, such as tiles or rods.
- Each group counts and tells how many yellow or red items they have.
math problems for them to solve with the sticks. For
- Say/sign: Luis (in yellow group) has 3 yellow tiles. (Luis must get 3 yellow tiles from his group members and go to the front of the class.)
- Say: Jen (in red group) has 2 red tiles. (Jen gets 2 red tiles from her group and goes to stand by Luis.)
- Ask: How many tiles do Luis and Jen have all together?
- Teacher and class count the tiles.
- Write problem and answer on board (3 + 2 = 5).
- Continue until all students have participated.
each group a stack of pictures or objects that are red or
- Each group sorts pictures into appropriate stacks.
- When finished, each member of a group shows a picture and tells class what it is (e.g., a red shoe).
- They continue until they have shown and identified all the pictures.
- Continue with similar activities as appropriate.
- Discrimination activities: Encourage children
to use good signing, speech,
fingerspelling, and writing.
- Have them note difference in the shapes of the words in lipreading.
- With children who have some hearing, encourage them to listen to the differences between the two words red and yellow.
- Put 3
objects of the table, two red and one another color.
- Children identify the red objects.
- Continue using 3 and more objects.
- Develop concept of color blue using similar steps and procedures.
- Develop concept of color black using similar steps and procedures.
- Present discrimination activities for the colors blue and black.
- Reinforcement/Practice/Discrimination activities with all
four colors- Culminating activity
- Children make a book “Colors I Know” with the drawings of their favorite objects.
- Display in room for a day or two, and then send home with a letter to parents encouraging them to reinforce the color concepts in the home environment.
(Many concepts can be developed using a format similar to that presented here, for example, adjectives of size: big, little; descriptive adjectives: glad, sad).