Summer of Science: Spinning Color Wheel SOS: Color Wheels

This month is marks the beginning to the end of our Summer of Science series and I’m super excited to be wrapping things up with experiments in the field of Light and Color! These are fun classic activities that let your children get creative with science and I love getting creative!

When I was in school we made color wheels, put a string through the middle, spun it around, and watched the colors blend.  Instead of using string, my kids preferred using pencils as spinners, not that it makes that much of a difference.  No matter how you spin it you’re kids will still get a kick out of seeing the colors blend…but what color will they create?

Spinning Color Wheel Spinning Color Wheel

  • cardstock
  • markers
  • scissors
  • pencil 
SOS: Spinning Color Wheels


Start off by cutting a few circles out of the cardstock.  Divide the circle into seven different sections, they don’t have to be perfect, and color them red, orange, yellow, green, blue, purple, and indigo (bluish).  Don’t look at my pictures for color guidance, I got a little distracted at all the pretty colors so our color wheels are ‘perfect.’ Coloring Color Coloring our Color Wheels

Punch a hole in the middle with a pencil and start spinning! SOS: Adding the pencil Spinning Color Wheels

Explanation: White Light is make up of all the colors of the spectrum, so when we spin the paper the colors combine to produce white (sorry I couldn’t capture it with the pictures).  Let’s take this one step further and get a basic understanding of how our eyes even see color.

It all starts with light, as it focuses on our retinas light-sensitive cells send messages via the optic nerve to our brain, the two types of these cells we’re most familiar with are rods and cones.  Rods work in dim lights and cannot distinguish colors.  Dogs and other animals only have rods so while they can’t see colors they are able to see better in the dark.  There are three types of cone cells, those that respond to blue, green, or red light.  If a person is color blind their cones don’t work properly so they confuse their colors.

Thursday we’ll be learning about spectrums as we continue our Summer of Science Series!  Also keep an eye out this week for my BlogHer 12 Recap and Giveaway Announcement!


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