Patented Q & A Database


My 2 1/2 year old daughter is stuck on the color red. Her Pre-school teacher has talked to me recently regarding this. She is very intelligent, but refused to idenify any color other than red. She appears to get frustrated when I try to go over her colors with her at home or while we are out and about. She has even changed the subject to counting or pointing out shapes. What is the root of this problem? Is she just being headstrong? Could there be an underlying problem, such as color blindness? What is the best approach to help her with this?


Sharon Buchalter Replied: This is a very interesting question. First your daughter should have a full eye exam to rule out any physical causes for this, such as color blindness. Next, consider some of her behaviors outside of identifying colors. Do you notice that she is headstrong in other areas of her life? If so, once any medical reason is ruled out, we can assume it is her strong will and need to be in control that may contribute to her need to insist upon all colors being red. Back off on testing her, and instead ask her when she would like to play "Guess this Color." Try to keep her in charge of the game. She may delight in playing a peek and boo find the color blue, yellow game, where she is in control. This way you will satisfy her need to be in control without bucking horns with her and drilling her to name another color other than red. You could also try using some colored bins - such as the fabric storage bins available at home improvement stores - to store her favorite toys or clothes in. When you're playing, ask her to get something for you from the BLUE bin - or the GREEN bin. This way, you're getting her to at least identify the colors by going to the right bins, even if she wants to call them "red." Don't be too hard on her; keep in mind she's just 2 ½. Once you've ruled out any medical cause for her "red" fixation, give her some time. She may be saying the wrong color to get your attention or to get you to react. She may think it's silly. I actually address issues related to discipline and helping children learn about empathy and goal-setting in my book, Children are People Too: Unlocking the 8 Secrets of Family Happiness. You can read more at
Posted On 2007-11-14 09:21:10
Sharon Silver Replied: Mom, There are two ways to look at this question. Let me clarify both and then you choose which way you want to precede. Your daughter may just really be in love with the color red, I know I certainly am. If she's refusing to learn about any other color, it may simply be a situation of strong will. Due to her young age she may feel as if learning about another color means she doesn't love red any more and she isn't ready to let go of her beloved color. If it feels like that to you, then ignore it and don't force her to learn about another color just yet. She's in the throws of her first bid for independence and she wants to have some control over her life and her choices. Her insistence to change the subject when you mention learning about another color means forcing her will cause a tantrum or power struggle. I know the preschool teacher mentioned this to you and that may cause you to worry, but I don't see a need to be concerned. This too will pass she's only 21/2. However, there's another way to look at this too, and that requires a trip to the eye doctor. If you're saying that your daughters response to the question, "what color is this?" is always red, then to set you mind at ease go to the eye doctor to make sure all is well. I've been teaching parenting for 16 years and parenting for 28 and I've never heard of a child constantly answering the "what color is this" question by always saying "red". Mom, you know her best, you'll have to use your mommy wisdom and intuition to decide which way to go. Good luck.
Posted On 2007-11-12 18:25:26
Press Esc to close