This hands on activity is an awesome way to get kids thinking about common patterns such as ABAB, ABC, AABB, AAB and ABB.
Preparation – Patterning Mats
I printed the patterning mats and laminated them for added durability. Then I cut along the dotted lines to separate the mats. Next I grabbed a basket of red, blue, yellow and green pom poms and was set to go! This activity works well with counters too, just make sure the colours are red, blue, green and yellow.
How To Play
The kids and I chatted about the patterns they could see on each pattern mat. I used the first pattern mat as an example and pointed out the pattern “yellow, blue, yellow, blue, yellow, blue”. Then I said “I wonder what colour comes next. What do you think?”. The kids quickly responded with yellow, so we added a yellow pom pom to the mat, then blue and so on. The kids continued to make the patterns illustrated on the other mats.
Encourage the kids to make their own patterns without a mat and ask them to describe their pattern.
Preparation – Make A Pattern Worksheet
Each page contains two worksheets, so I printed enough copies so that when I cut the worksheet in half there was enough for all students. Then I grabbed some coloured pencils and bingo daubers.
How To Play
The kids and I chatted about how a pattern is made by repeating the same number of colours, in the same order, over and over. I made an AAB pattern as an example and then encouraged the kids to come up with their own pattern. The kids loved using the bingo daubers, which I found at a discount store. Other materials that work well are stamps, highlighters, stickers, pom poms and paint.
Tip: Clipping pom poms onto pegs and then dipping them in a tray of paint is another super fun way for kids to make their patterns.
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