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Learning colours - when?

(25 Posts)
Lorelai Sat 13-Oct-12 17:59:42

Obviously bearing in mind all children are different, when would you expect a child to be able to identify colours correctly? Would it make any difference if the child was developmentally 'ahead' in other areas (speech particularly)?

Trying to work out when I should get concerned that DD2 just can't seem to recognise her colours - she knows all the colour names, but when you ask her what colour something is she never gets it right (apart from pink for some reason!).

nextphase Sat 13-Oct-12 18:19:06

I'd say DS1 could identify colours from under 2 (bring me a red car, find me the blue cup in the picture), and could name them at 2.5 (late speaker - minimal words before 2).
At 3.5 he's accurate and has been for ages, but I've heard that by 3, most can identify ONE colour. Nursery seem to think he's good with colours.
Do you think she has a sight problem, hence not naming correctly? Or is it just something that will come right with age?

radicalsubstitution Sat 13-Oct-12 18:29:44

Lorelei, you haven't said how old your dd is (or maybe I missed it). DS knew all his colours at 2 - along with shapes. DD is only just getting it at 2.6, and it is hard not to cmpare them.

On the other hand, she could use cutlery and a scooter way before he could. She also counts accurately to 11, whereas I'm sure DS was older before he could.

DS was talking in sentences of about 6 words at 2, whereas she was only putting 2 words together. Now, at 2.6 her speech is exactly where DS' was at this age.

Children have different interests as well as abilities. They have priorities that don't necessarily match ours...

Lorelai Sat 13-Oct-12 18:42:59

I deliberately didn't say, to avoid people telling me I am worrying too soon. She is only 22 months but she is talking in sentences (up to half a dozen words) can use tenses correctly (no me didn't; me done a poo, change mine nappy), role plays well, and has been for about 6 months, can count to 3, recognises that numbers are numbers (not which number, just that something written down is a number rather than something else) and is physically ahead too; walking at 9 months, just started jumping with two feet off the ground etc. It is just colours that seem a bit off.

I tested her earlier, she got the colour of her dress nd my jumper right (pink and red) but said my blue jeans were brown and an orange sticker was yellow. I am just wondering if she is not seeing them properly.

Pochemuchka Sat 13-Oct-12 18:44:01

Radical has pretty much said what I was going to say.

DD is 3.5 and knew all her colours/shapes etc well before 2. She was also talking in sentences at 18 months and you could have a proper conversation with her. She's now about the same as all her peers, ahead with language but not so good at holding pens, drawing etc

DS is 19 months and his language has been far slower. He can label 'red' on a couple of objects but never says colours, knows no shapes and his language is a long way behind hers at that age. On the other hand, his physical skills are far better, fine motor - he can hold a pen as well as DD, gross motor - he is already better at catching than she is.

You don't say how old your DD is an are you concerned because she is good at language but not at her colours? If so, my friend's son (one month older than DD) has amazing language but has only just started to get his colours right. Nothing wrong with his sight, just one of those things.

Lorelai Sat 13-Oct-12 18:44:43

And I am not worried really, just wondering if I should be, or rather when I should start to be.

Lorelai Sat 13-Oct-12 18:49:11

Actually she has just decided she can count to ten! Randomly out of the blue just did it.

Chundle Sat 13-Oct-12 20:22:54

22 month! crikey dont worry!! my dd2 is 3.2 and only confidently knows blue!! yet she can work an ipad, navigate youtube create and edit playlists and search for videos and music so I have no worries - i dont think!!! Or should I be???!

Lorelai Sat 13-Oct-12 20:26:32

As I say, not worried as such, just wanted to know what was normal. Sounds like that is anywhere from 2 to well over 3 so will wait a while before I worry! smile

radicalsubstitution Sat 13-Oct-12 20:41:31

I probably have more right to worry than most because I am partially sighted (and increasing colour-blindness is the first sign).

With DD her ability to recognise colours crept up gradually from pink (no surprise there) at about 2, to all colours (most of the time) now (almost 2.7). She went through a phase of about 6 months where she knew the names of all the colours, but would just assign them randomly.

Like I said, I worried becasue DS knew them all at 2.

I certainly wouldn't worry about it.

Lorelai Sat 13-Oct-12 20:58:40

Thanks, that was exactly what I needed to hear smile

CarpeJugulum Sat 13-Oct-12 21:04:49

DS is two and everything is blue if you ask him.

He does know colours - he'll get the red car, the blue plate and so on.

But, "blooooo" is the colour.

Elizabeth22 Mon 15-Oct-12 12:42:45

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

WitchesTitWhistles Mon 15-Oct-12 12:52:15

Ds is 22 months and isn't speaking at your DD's level but he knows 3 or 4 colours and is beginning to count. They all learn different things at different rates. It's hard not to compare but she sounds like she's doing splendidly.

HoratiaWinwood Mon 15-Oct-12 13:13:17

DS1 could distinguish and identify them before he could say them (he signed them instead) so between 18m and 2yo. I remember that people thought that was pretty early though.

I think pre-school and primary school would be concerned if a child didn't know colours, so I guess some point between 2 and 4 is normal.

rumbelina Mon 15-Oct-12 22:05:23

Ds is 23m and everything is yellow. Except vans which are white, for some reason he's really excited by a 'white van', even if its green.

ThePinkNinja Tue 16-Oct-12 14:03:35

DS1 is 2.0 and everything here is green smile
He's just not interested in colours.

Knows his shapes tho and is starting to count and sentences / vocab is fab....
They're all different, but I felt the same as you.... I'm going to re-evaluate in 6 months.... But I'm hoping to see some improvement by then smile

BabydollsMum Tue 16-Oct-12 15:19:13

DD's 20 months and is pretty good with colours, but that's only because she's been obsessed with the colourful plastic pegs on the line all summer. Seemed the perfect opportunity to teach her. I think it's so much easier when it happens naturally like that.

familyfun Wed 17-Oct-12 22:22:41

dd2 is 22 months and everything is green. she can recite numbers to 13 but not actually count objects. she knows a few shapes. she talks in sentences but cannot hold a pencil and only draws lines.

LapinDeBois Wed 17-Oct-12 22:36:18

As far as I know it's not linked to general development. Both of my boys knew their colours by about 23 months; DS1 (now five) is very bright, DS2 seems nearer the average (though still only two so hard to tell). But I know other children who are also very bright but didn't know them until well after 3.

LapinDeBois Wed 17-Oct-12 22:39:44

Also, I think a lot of it depends on how much time you spend reinforcing their learning on colours. My theory is that kids of around 2 are so receptive that you can teach them anything you like, providing you repeat it. DS1 (admittedly v bright) developed a keen interest in shapes at that age, so we spent loads of time drawing shapes for him. By the time he was two and a half he could name about twenty shapes, including pentagon, rhombus etc. But he lost interest in shapes after a while, and now he wouldn't know a rhombus if it poked him in the nose grin.

lemontwist Wed 17-Oct-12 22:49:46

My DS is 2.5. He is fairly good with his colours and has been for a while though he frequently says 'red' for everything with a smirk on his face & i'm sure he knows but is being silly. He speaks well and knows shapes but struggles to count to 3. I'd disagree slightly with Lapin tho - you can repeat and repeat to reinforce but if the concept doen't 'click' they take a while longer. They get there in the end though.

LapinDeBois Thu 18-Oct-12 14:07:02

lemontwist sorry if I sounded like I was 'blaming' OP for not doing enough to teach colours - I didn't mean that at all. I was really saying that although you can teach 2 year olds most things if you set your mind to it, there isn't really any benefit to that sort of intensive 'training' (we only did the shapes thing with DS1 because he was so interested). And I do think colours are one of the hardest things to teach, anyway - you only have to spend two minutes thinking of all the different colours we call 'blue', for example (navy, pastel blue, light blue, royal blue, electric blue, sea-green blue, indigo) to see why they find it so hard to 'get'. OP, if you do want to make a real effort to teach your DD colours, I think it's just a matter of reinforcing it all the time - point out the colour of things around you all the time, and set her frequent 'tests' like asking her specifically to pass you the blue bowl or the red block (I'm sure you know all this already). DS2 also likes books about colours - we've got a couple, like a multi-picture book with the images grouped into colour pages, and 'Brown Bear, Brown Bear what do you see', which he loves.

DeWe Thu 18-Oct-12 14:16:07

Dd1 was in full sentences around 20 months. She knew her alphabet upper and lower case, names and sounds by 2yo, count up to 100 at 2yo... and her colours at about 3.3yo.

I thought she was colour blind because how could a child know what she did and have no clue on colours. She just wasn't interested, but was in letters and numbers. When she did know them she learnt all including things like beige, turquiose, magenta etc. in a week.

Dd2 loved colours and first learnt them at 18 months. That was basic colours then (blue, red, yellow, green). She learnt the harder colours gradually over the next 2 years, and at 3.3yo knew roughly the same set at dd1.

Ds learnt them gradually between the age of 2 and 3, but still (age 5yo)wouldn't be bothered by some of the more obscure names. He'd just say "that's like a reddy-pink" rather than a name. However he could identify various military aircraft from their outline at 3yo. grin

DeWe Thu 18-Oct-12 14:17:14

Oh and dd1 was the only one I spent time trying to activately teach colours to. The others just got it on their own.

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