Get Creative with Colouring Books

Individual activity

Early-Mid Stage

Find your stage




Art & Crafts

Art & Crafts


Ive got 20 min

20 min

Ive got 60 min

60 min

About the activity & how to play it

Colouring is a therapeutic activity that encourages creativity, relaxation and mindfulness for somebody living with dementia. It’s also all the rage right now!

Our colouring books bring the seasons to life through meaningful, age-appropriate illustrations and prompts to help residents colour each image on their own.

Colouring is a great one-to-one activity, when you have five minutes spare. But it’s also excellent as a group. Wile away afternoons together with colouring pencils in hand, and use the interesting facts on the pages to guide a discussion.


You'll need

  1. Active Minds Colouring Books or others
    Press 'Email Resources' button below the image above to get an email with an example page
  2. Colouring pencils
  3. Tray to lean on, if necessary

The Activity

  1. All you need is a quiet and clear space, preferably at a table with a plain tablecloth or background, so the image to colour can be easily seen
  2. Let the person choose the colouring book they like best from a selection, and pick an image they’d like to colour in
  3. Leave the page open in front of them and put a selection of colouring pencils around it, so the colours can be seen and chosen easily
  4. Encourage them to colour the image independently
  5. Help them decide where to begin and discuss which colour pencil they would like to use
  6. If they’re struggling to decide where to start or which colour to use, offer some support and say that they can start anywhere on the page or point to a place to start. Suggest a few colours that might be good and limit the choice – too much choice could be making this decision difficult. You can also suggest using the sample image to help them decide
  7. Why not encourage them to try hatching or cross-hatching on the larger areas for a different effect? You’ll find techniques inside the Active Minds Colouring Books
  8. Once they’ve finished, use the text on that page to encourage conversations about the image. Try asking questions about the theme of the book to trigger memories
  9. You could create an activity on the back of the image. For example, from the blackberry-picking image in Autumn Colours, you could go blackberry picking and bake a blackberry pie for dessert

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