Rainbow rice bin


Learning Objective

  • Encourages kids to explore materials with little to no supervision
  • Process information through all senses, activating sensory play
  • Develops creativity, critical thinking and imagination
  • Comprehends new words and gestures and makes different sound effects
  • Develop awareness about concepts such as measurement, primary and secondary colors.

Age Group

 1 year and above

Materials required

  1. White rice of unfixed quantity, depending on how much you want to color

  2. Food dye in the colors you want to use (or liquid watercolor paints)

  3. Ziploc bags (separate one for each color)

  4. Cookie sheet or wax paper

  5. Plastic container big enough to hold the rice

Activity guide


  1. Get Ziploc bags and fill them with white rice. Don’t fill them to the brim. 
  2. Dye the rice with food dye or liquid watercolor paints. An adult should assist the kids when dealing with food dye.
  3. Ask the children questions about their favourite color, which dye are they using to paint the rice. You can also alternatively mix primary colors to create a secondary color, like mixing blue and red to obtain purple.
  4. Once the children are done painting, instruct them to shake the bag.
  5. Ask them which color they expect their rice to be in a handful of hours. 
  6. Gently seal the Ziploc bags.
  7. After the paint has diffused into the rice, transfer it onto cookie sheets or wax paper and air dry for 24 hours.
  8. Shake the rice in a plastic container to simulate the sound of rain pitter pattering on a tin roof. Compare the noise that the rice makes when it is shaken gently and vigorously, and with the container lid open and closed. 
  9. You can also shake the container to the sound of nursery rhyme or the student’s favorite beat.
  10. For activity closure, use dyed rice to make patterns and pictures. You can sketch the picture you want to transform into line art or rely on a printable shape worksheet, like the one given below. 
  11. Reiterate the concept of primary and secondary colors for recapitulation.

Relevance of the activity

Whether they’re dipping their hands in colored rice or pouring it over their little fingers, children will love the various sensations that touching rice brings. Coloured rice games can hone the creativity of children and also expand their mental worldview. As a result, now is the best time as any to give your infant coloured rice to play with.


Cognitive Skill



Did the student color the rice on their own with little to no supervision?


Did the student understand the concept of primary and secondary colors?


Did the student identify the colors correctly?


Did the student measure the quantity of paints correctly?


Did the student identify the shapes accurately?


Did the student comprehend instructions given?


Did the student follow the instructions?


Did the student learn by observing?


Share the knowledge

Often, the games children indulge themselves in bring up fond memories for adults. Have you ever caught yourself reminiscing about the time you and your parents would dye rice and play with rainbow rice? The cycle of life is beautiful, really. Back then, parents probably didn’t have the resources to capture these cherishable moments. Luckily for modern parents, Illumine has your back. To stay caught up on their child’s developmental processes, parents can check our assessments for preschool tab for real-time updates. Teachers can also record photographs of your child enjoying unstructured play time on our daycare app.


Daycare owners can take a free 11-day trial of the app to see some of these features in action. Illumine is a close-knit community that’s trusted by more than 100 daycares across the world. Put your faith in us to keep parents and children smiling from ear to ear.

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