Montessori Inspired Toddler Activities: Primary Colours


When Mia was really little I would just point out different colours in books and all around us. But about month ago I decided to start using the Montessori Colour Tablets to provide more invitations to colour sort and to highlight this language, specifically the primary colours: red, yellow, and blue.

When working with colour, it’s important to isolate just the colour. In other words, objects, shapes, and materials should be identical. Only the colour should be different. This way the toddler understands the adjective is being explored, not the noun. If you examined a blue socks, red bag, and yellow flower, the difference of nouns (things) would be more prominent than the difference in colour.

Colour Box 1 – box contains six colour tablets: two blue, two red, two yellow (the primary colours). This is an individual presentation which should be carried out on a neutral coloured table or a neutral mat. I take out the colour tablets one at the time showing her how to hold them by the edge. Than I give her opportunity to help taking all the tablets out. After that I pick up one tablet and put it at the bottom of the mat or table. She now finds another tablet, compares the colour, and puts them together if appropriate. We continue in this way until the three pairs of tablets are matched. Colour Box 1 is perfect for an introductory Three Period Lesson (parts one and two only) for the language.

It is about a month since I have introduced colour tablets to Mia, at the moment she can identify only one colour by name. She says ”lu” (blue). To support her learning I have created few more Montessori inspired activities to discover primary colours.

Threading Large Beads – to develop and refine threading skills. Children need good eye/hand co-ordination and the ability to use both hands for threading. It is about finding ways to include the language of the colours in interests and work she would already be using.

Coloured Disc on 3 Colourded Dowels from Absorbent Minds Montessori – this educational activity focuses on hand-eye co-ordination and manipulative skills. It also develops colour recognition and distinction. In the beginning (about a 10 months ago) Mia wasn’t very interested into this activity because it was difficult for her. Since she is able to place disc on dowels she loves it. She is now able to sort them out by the colours.

Circle, Square and Triangle Puzzle from Tower High Learning – very simple puzzles designed for the young toddler who has developed a gross level of eye-hand coordination. Like so much of the work for this discovery, it’s about finding ways to include the language of the colors in interests and work she would already be using.

Sensory Bean Bags – I’ve made those when Mia was 6 months old and still she loves them. For this occasion I selected red, blue and yellow bean bag. They are simple open-ended toys that allow baby/toddler to experience many different textures, sounds, and colors as they play. Now we use them to practice gross motor skills (balance) by placing them on top of our heads. Such a simple and fun game.

Toddler Colour Books – Can be used in either card or book form – book requires assembly. I assembled them very simple but if you have book binding machine than you can make a proper little book.

DIY Colour Wheel – This is one of Mia’s favourite activities. I printed out Colour Wheel and laminated. As for the coloured items used to match the coloured triangles, I just collected them from around the house. As you can see here, I tried to get some different shapes in too.

Pom Pom Colour Sort –  This simple set up is great for developing fine motor skills and match activity. I’ve made those coloured bowls by using colouring paper and glue. Tongs or tweezers are a great way to encourage fine motor skills, strengthening muscles in little hand and building dexterity in little fingers.

And that’s it! There’s usually 3-4 of these out at one time, I rotate as Mia loses interest in what’s on the shelves, or if I notice that she is gravitating toward a specific skill.

Don’t forget to pin this for later!

L xoxo

  • Carrie Ford-Coates


    Great article. I really like the pom pom color sort. I have done something similar but have not tried giving her tweezers or tongs. I am definitely going to try this out.

  • jehava


    This is so much fun! My little guy would love this!

    • Leky83

      Thank you Jehava!

  • Heather Montgomery


    So fun! My toddler is all into colors right now!

    • Leky83

      Thank you Heather!

  • Meg


    These activities look like so much fun. Perfect for even the littlest toddlers to explore.

    • Leky83

      THank you Meg!

  • Jessica Peresta


    These are awesome ideas! I’m really loving the Montessori approach.

    • Leky83

      Thank you Jessica!

  • Ashley


    Thanks for sharing all these fun ideas! I look forward to trying some of them out with my littlest!

    • Leky83

      Thank you Ashley!

  • Jessica Kromer


    Wow, what great activities to teach and learn color. Our daughter, Aria, is going to be 20 months old, and I’ve realized that she gets confused with naming colors when there are a lot to choose from. I’ll have to invest in something like yours so she can focus on a few colors at a time. Thanks so much for the tips! Your babe is adorable!

    • Leky83

      Thank you Jessica! Glad you found it useful!

  • Danielle @ A Sprinkle of Joy


    These are such fun activities! Exploring colors is great!

    • Leky83

      Thank you Danielle!

  • val


    Love the pom pom sort! Great way to learn colors

    • Leky83

      Thank you Val!

  • Rachel


    Thank you thank you thank you for sharing these! I’ve been looking for these types of activities!!!

    • Leky83

      Thank you Rachel, you are so kind!

  • Tabitha Blue


    Great tips! I didn’t really think about that part before… everything else the same, just the colors different.

  • Joanna


    I want to try this with my kiddos! What a great activity.

    • Leky83

      Thank you Joanna!

  • Adrianne


    These are great ideas, I will definitely be trying these with my little! For reference, how old was your toddler when you introduced them to her?

    • Leila

      Thanks Adrianne. My daughter was around 20 months when set those activities for her.

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