Thursday, February 10, 2011

Please Touch Discovery Center: Patterns!

What is a pattern? Simply put, a pattern is a thing that repeats!
Patterns are everywhere. When children start recognizing patterns they see how things fit together and work. Word patterns, art patterns, math patterns, behavior patterns. Patterns help children make connections, learn how to predict more accurately and learn sequencing as a few smaller aspects.

Math and Science Skills and Concepts
When children explore patterns they:

  • Create, copy, and extend repeating patterns
  • Notice organized arrangements
  • Predict what will come next in a sequence
  • Practice identifying, naming and copying patterns in their environment

Finding Patterns:

Children learn about patterns and relationships by observing the world around them. Pattern recognition is the first step in understanding how our world is constructed and how it functions.

Even very young children show an interest in patterns.


• Recognize and reproduce simple patterns (they build a tower of blocks that is red, green, yellow, red, green, yellow).

• Imitate sound and physical movements (they clap, jump, clap, jump).

• Recognize and talk about patterns in their environment (daily routines, the seasons, day and night, repeated phrases in books).

• Begin to predict what comes next.

For our station we have three challenges:
Figure out what comes next, make your own sound patterns and figure out what's missing.

Challenge #1
Make a Sound Pattern

For this activity visitors are charged with using the colors as a guide to make sound patterns:
Loud claps or soft claps;  loud stomps or softer stomps!
The choice is yours!

Goal: Children learn to describe, create and extend patterns using shapes

Challenge #2:
What comes next?

Can you guess what the next color/sticker will be?
Visitors can guess what comes next!
There are several to choose from

Goal: Children must figure out what comes next in the pattern

Understanding geometric shapes is more complex than just knowing
the names of common shapes such as circle, square and triangle.

Challenge #3
Make your own!

Make you own!
Strips are available for you to make your own patterns to take home and practice.

We also have books available to check out and explore more!
Hop Jump by Ellen Stoll Walsh
Zoe's Hats (a book of Colors and Patterns)
The Doorbell Rang by Pat Hutchins
Icky Bug Numbers 1 2 3 by Jerry Pallotta
Patterns What Comes Next by Michele Koomen
Ready for Math, I Know Shapes by Susan Nations, M.ed.
Let us know what patterns you make!

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