Creating patterns was a skill that B had a great deal of trouble with at the beginning of this year, so it’s a skill that we have continually hit all year-long. She is now doing better with simple ABAB patterns but anything more advanced is often still a struggle.
Patterning is a life-long mathematical skill that is vital to helping your child learn and understand many math concepts. For example, times tables and skip counting all require the basic understanding of patterns.
The great thing about creating patterns is that there are so many fun ways to get the job done. In today’s post you will see many ways to create patterns at home using objects or supplies that you already have on hand.
You can create patterns at home with your child by using any of the following supplies.
- Legos: Using different colors to create a pattern or even different sizes.
- Blocks: Use different shaped blocks to create a pattern
- Stamps: Grab two or three of your child’s favorite stamps and create a few different ABAB patterns.
- Stickers: Stickers normally come in sheets with multiple rows of the same kind of sticker, if you don’t already have some of these you can pick them up at the Dollar Store. Kids love stickers and they make a great tool for creating patterns.
- Skittles/Colorful Goldfish/Starbursts: Using colorful food, you can easily create patterns on your plate or napkin while your little ones are having a snack.
- Beads: Using beads and a pipe cleaner or string you can create a pattern while making jewelry.
- Dot Markers: Dot Markers and Paper are all you need for some simple patterning fun.
- Movement patterns: For the kid that loves to move you can create patterns out of movement. Walk-jump-walk-jump or Step-Spin-Jump-Step-Spin-Jump.
Another important aspect of patterning is that you generalize it. Teaching your child how to find patterns in different ways not just “during school” is so important and is a skill that will be beneficial to them forever.
Look for patterns:
- At the playground: The color patterns on the monkey bars, the landscaping blocks around the playground, etc.
- In Nature: Flower petals, flower arrangements, landscaping bushes, leaves, animal prints, animal tracks.
- In Clothing: Plaid, stripes, prints
- In Your Daily Routine: Does your daily schedule follow a basic pattern. What do you do after lunch each day?
For more ideas on Patterning with Preschoolers check out these ideas:
Bear Math Patterns for Preschoolers by Fun A Day
Making Patterns with Legos and Egg Cartons by The Imagination Tree
Truck Patterns by The Measured Mom
Skittles Patterning Cards by The Math Geek Mama
What creative ways have you found to work on patterning with your child? I look forward to hearing your patterning success stories.