Here are rainbow theme learning activities and games. These ideas will work great for the classroom or at home.
There are many ideas that are geared to younger children in this category; however, there are also suggestions for school-age youth.
1. Rainbow Tag
✓ Four or more players
✓ Five tongue depressors, each one marked with a color of the rainbow
✓ Water-based face paint
✓ Crayons in the same rainbow colors
✓ A pink or rainbow-colored article of clothing
✓ Wet wipes
How to Play:
- To prepare, hide each tongue depressor along with the matching color of face paint in a different place around the play area.
- Next, choose someone to be “Pinkie”, the player who sneaks around trying to tag the other players and undo their progress. Give Pinkie something pink or rainbow-colored to wear.
- To play, set everyone but Pinkie out in search of the sticks.
- Each time a player finds one of the colored sticks, he should discreetly don’t give away the location to the others! Paint a stripe on his face, then leave the stick and paint in place. Bluffing is encouraged to keep the locations secret.
- The catch: Pinkie will be lurking, trying to tag the players. Every time she does, she wipes off one of their stripes.
- The first player to get one stripe in each color wins.
2. Rainbow Colored Block Stacking Game
This is a fun game using blocks of different colors. Not only will this be fun for the classroom but it would make a great birthday party game.
How to Play
- Build a tower with colorful blocks.
- Roll the animal dice.
- Remove a block containing the animal from the dice that was rolled.
- Stack the removed block on top of the tower.
- Continue to play until the tower collapses.
3. Pot of Gold Drama Game
You say, “If I found a pot of gold at the foot of the rainbow, I’d buy this…” Then you show by acting out what you would buy. The others try to guess what you bought, and the first one to guess becomes the new actor.
Have a treasure hunt and hide the treasure in a pot of gold to be shared by everyone once all the ‘rainbow-themed clues’ have been found.
4. Rainbow Walk Party Game
- Spread out different colored paper circles.
- Children step on each circle as the music is playing.
- Once it stops, the child on a certain color can get a prize.
Fun Rainbow Fact
We see rainbows during rain showers when the sun is shining on raindrops. Rainbows appear in the part of the sky that is the opposite of the sun. The closer we are to the rainbow-the brighter it appears, Rainbow colors are always the same in order: Violet, Dark Blue, Blue, Green, Yellow, Orange, Red. Everyone who looks at a rainbow sees it differently.
Rainbow Activities for Kids
5. Rainbow Hands Bulletin Board
- Using colored construction paper of yellow, orange, red, blue, green and purple trace children’s hands.
- Make about 10 handprints of each of the colors of the rainbow.
- Put the children’s names on the hand-prints; form the hands into a large, curved rainbow shape. (All the reds in one curved arch of the rainbow.
6. Coffee Filter Rainbows
Learning topics: rainbows, light, chromatography, spectrum, and color
The rainbows that we see in the sky are caused by a reflection of the sun’s rays in drops of rain. There are also other ways to view a rainbow with the help of water and a few other supplies.
✓ Coffee filter
✓ Paper clip
✓ Black and green water
✓ Soluble pens
- Fold the coffee filter into half.
- Fold it again one more time.
- Draw a dark green line about one inch (2-3 cm) from the round edge of the filter. (Be sure to save room for a black line next to it).
- Proceed to draw a dark black line one inch (2-3 cm) from the other side of the round edge. (Do not let the lines touch each other).
- Make the filter into a cone shape by securing the edge of the paper filter with the paper clip.
- Place water in the saucer.
- Put the round edge of the filter in the water.
- Let the filter stay in this position for one hour and then observe the results.
- Now, explore! Pay close attention to what happens to the dark green line. Record your observations and explain what you think is happening during this experiment.
7. Catching an Indoor Rainbow
✓ Clear glass or medium-sized clear jar filled with water to the top
✓ Window sill
✓ Bright sunlight
✓ White paper
✓ Watercolor paints or crayons.
- Fill a glass or clear jar with water to the top.
- Set glass/jar on the window sill in bright sunlight.
- Glass or jar should stick out over the ledge just a little bit.
- Place a white piece of paper on the floor in front of the window (tape 2 or 3 pieces to form a poster size and obtain a bigger rainbow image).
- A rainbow will be captured/reflected on the paper. This will greatly depend on how bright the sunlight is and the positioning of the glass jar, so move the jar side to side on the window sill to help the process until you see the rainbow reflected on the paper.
- Quickly draw lines to capture the rainbow and children can paint directly on the paper on the floor as the rainbow is reflected there.
8. An Indoor Rainbow
- To create an indoor rainbow fill a glass pan with water and place a mirror in the water so that it is leaning against the edge of the pan.
- Completely darken the room and shine a flashlight on the mirror.
- Carefully adjust the angle of the light until a rainbow is reflected on a wall or the ceiling.
- You can then give children with paper and art supplies to copy the order of the colors of the rainbow.
9. Plant a Rainbow
You can grow a blooming rainbow by planting curved rows of different-colored flowers. For the best effect, use plants that have similar heights.
10. Water Color Giant Rainbow
- Make a giant rainbow by painting a large sheet of paper with water.
- Add big arcs of color (red, orange, yellow, green, blue, violet).
- The colors will slowly blend into each other.
11. Rainbow Arcs
- Remove the wrappers from rainbow-colored crayons: Red, orange, yellow, green, blue, and purple.
- Have children use the sides of the crayons to draw rainbow arcs on paper.
- If the weather is good, invite them to make rainbows on a sidewalk with colored chalk.
12. Tape 6 Different Crayons
Arrange six crayons in a straight line. They should be arranged in order of the rainbow colors. Show children how to draw a rainbow with one stroke.
13. Fruit Cereal Rainbows
✓ Froot Loops cereal
✓ Cotton balls
- Glue rainbow-colored Froot Loop cereal on construction paper in the shape of a rainbow!
- When complete add the cotton clouds and sun.
14. Paper and Yarn Rainbow
✓ Roll paper
✓ Several different colors of yarn
✓ Construction paper that matches yarn colors
- On pieces of roll paper, draw arched lines to represent rainbows.
- Put glue on the rainbow lines and have children place a piece of different colored yarn along the entire length of each line.
- Have the children tear the colored paper into pieces, one color at a time. Then have them glue the torn paper onto the area between the pieces of yarn, under the yarn for that color.
- Encourage children to fill the entire space with the appropriate colored paper pieces.
- You may want to color a portion of each space with a crayon to help.
15. Rainbow Art Collage
Using rainbow shaped paper and rainbow-colored yarn, the children can make rainbow yarn collages.
16. Summer Rainbow
This rainbow activity for 4 to 8 years old.
✓ Washable watercolor
✓ Art tissue paper
✓ Construction paper – 9″ x 12″
✓ Cotton balls
✓ Ribbon & Yarn
✓ Hole punch
✓ A rainbow template (Pre-make one)
- Using the templates, trace and cut out one rainbow and 2 clouds.
- Have children decorate both sides of the rainbow with watercolors.
- Set aside to dry.
- Glue the clouds to each end of the rainbow.
- Cut brightly-colored tissue paper into 1/2″ strips.
- Have the children glue the tissue paper strips to the clouds.
- Glue cotton balls onto the clouds.
- Attach yarn to the top of the rainbow to hang and display.
17. Rainbow streamer
✓ Red, orange, yellow, green, blue, and purple crepe paper streamers
✓ A paper plate for each child
- Cut the center out of a paper plate.
- Cut long pieces of red, orange, yellow, green, blue, and purple crepe paper streamers; each streamer should be about two to three feet long.
- Staple a rainbow of streamers onto the paper plate.
18. Rainbow, Clouds, Rain Craft
✓ 9″ paper plate
✓ 2 squares of tissue paper in each color: pink, peach, light yellow, lime, light blue, and lavender
✓ 6 cotton balls
✓ Christmas tree icicles
✓ Fishing line or yarn
✓ Needle or hole punch
- Cut a paper plate in half. Cut an arc from one half of the plate.
- Cut tissue paper into 2″ squares from the rainbow colors. You may use either pastel or a variation would be to use bright colors (red, orange, yellow, green, blue and purple). Each color takes approximately 30 squares to completely cover a row.
- Roll each square into a ball or pinch the entrance of the square and gather the tissue into a point and glue to the arc. Keep each color in its own row.
- For the rain, tape Christmas tree icicles at the bottom back of the rainbow
- For clouds, glue cotton balls or fiberfill to each end of the rainbow.
- To make the hanger use a hole punch at the top of the rainbow and thread yarn through it. If you use fishing line, use a needle to thread it through.
19. Rainbows from Buttons
✓ Heavyweight colored paper
✓ Rainbow colored paint
- Arrange buttons on the paper in the shape of a rainbow and then paint the buttons in broad stripes of color with the paints.
- Let buttons dry to have a nice button rainbow.
20. Colored Pasta Rainbows
Dye pasta noodles in batches of red, orange, yellow, green, blue, and purple.
Have children use the pieces for:
#1. Glue on white paper to make a rainbow.
#2. String on very long yarn in batches of colors.
For younger children: Sort and count the pasta pieces by color.
Place or glue the pieces on matching colored paper.
How to color pasta directions are in the Paint and Color Recipe Category
Fun ‘rainbow themed’ ideas
Ask children to wear clothing of each color of the rainbow or dress in a solid color of just one of the rainbow colors. You could also declare ‘rainbow day” and all wear as many colors as possible!
21. Mix and match plates, cups, and napkins in rainbow colors.
22. Face painting a small rainbow on the cheek of each child.
23. Attach a large cardboard painted rainbow to the room’s front door.
24. Paint rainbows on the windows of your room (See Paint Recipes on Paint page)
25. Read the ‘Rainbow Fish’ books.
Make rainbow fish by decorating and putting sequins on cut out fish shapes.
26. Rainbow Colored Slinkies
Purchase some rainbow-colored ‘slinkies’ to slink down some stairs or steps.
27. Hide crayons of each rainbow color
For the children to find. As each crayon is found, color in a previously drawn arc on a big piece of paper. (Children group color parts of the arc) Once the rainbow is complete, everyone could get a treat for great ‘team’ work!
28. Rainbow Doorway Decoration Idea
This rainbow doorway would be a great decoration for a party–or as Katey Magill wrote at HavingFunatHome. “It’s nobody’s birthday, but we got out the streamers anyway- just for fun.”
29. Rainbow Party Favors
- Rainbow suckers
- Rainbow colored pinwheels
- Crayons or paint sets
- Mini notepads
- Bagged cotton candy (clouds)
- Unicorn tears
Put the Party Favors in a Rainbow Bag
Songs about rainbows
- The Rainbow Connection by Paul Williams and Kenneth Ascher and featured in the first Muppet Movie. Sung by Kermit the Frog.
- Over the Rainbow from The Wizard of Oz.
- I Can Sing a Rainbow: A children’s song used to teach them the names of the colors.
- Look to the Rainbow from Finian’s Rainbow.
- I’m Always Chasing Rainbows a song adapted from a Chopin Prelude
- Reading rainbow theme song – Check out the rainbow theme tune lyrics
You can have the students create Domino stones in the colors of the rainbow. Not only is this a cool activity to do in general, but when you color each stone in rainbow colors, they just look better.
Obviously, after they are done, you can also teach them the game and have fun with it.
31. Rainbow Jenga
Yes, the old familiar block tower game where each child needs to remove 1 block at his turn without crushing the entire tower, but the twist here is use a rainbow colors blocks.
There are many places where you can shop for colored blocks or even better, just get regular Jenga and have the students paint them in rainbow colors.
32. Rainbow binoculars
Easy activity for the little one. You take 2 empty toilet paper rolls, and a sheet of paper, let’s say A4.
Now you have each child color a stripe on the paper in the rainbow colors, after that they need to carefully cut the stripes and glue them to the rolls so the rolls make up a binoculars shape.
33. Straw soup
What you need:
|Straws ( rainbow colored )
Fill the bowl with some water. Have the kids cut the straws to look like little pastas and throw them into the bowl.
Have fun and pretend this is a real soup
Note – Don’t let the kids actually put the straws in their mouths.
34. Rainbow road
You will need these colored magnetic toy that every parent have.
They usually already come in colors of red, blue, yellow and purple so you can have the kids build a pretend road and take a few toy cars and have them ride the road.
35. Clock in the colors
Take an old and regular clock, and popsicle sticks ( you can collect the popsicle all year long from other activities and use them now )
Have the kids color each stick in the right colors, and now glue them onto the clock in the shape of a sun.
The clock is beautiful and you can also use it to teach kids about time and colors.
36. Musical chairs ( with a twist )
Go to the gym and have the kids place hula hoops on the floor in the colors of a rainbow.
Once you have enough hoops just plat the musical chairs game like you always do
37. Rainbow throwing game
A cool game to help kids with their throwing at a young age, and also teach them about colors.
Place cups next to a wall, ideally you would like to get colored cups, but if you can’t just paint the cups yourself. Now take a small ball, and have the kids stand in a reasonable distance from the wall.
When you say go, you shout out a color and they need to throw the ball into the cup with the correct color.
The winner is the one who got his ball to stick.
38. Rainbow corn hole game
Get regular corn hole mats and sacks. Have the kids paint them in rainbow colors and let them go free with their choices, the idea here is to create an abstract design.
When it’s done and dry, you can just play corn hole like you always do.
Create sheets of paper with the bingo board on them, but instead of drawing up numbers, draw a random color. The kid that completes a all the rainbow colors first, is the winner
Tip – To make it work, have more than 1 color per draw
40. Rainbow cereal
This is more for birthday parties and not really school. But still fun.
Get some rainbow colored cereal for your kids and serve them when it’s time for snacks. They will love it as it’s sweet, but also appreciate the fact that it looks like a rainbow ( at least we hope they will notice )
We hope you have enjoyed these rainbow theme learning activities for kids. These ideas will work great for a rainbow theme day or even a rainbow-themed birthday party.
Click here for Rain and Cloud Theme Ideas