Activities to Teach Students to Make a Repeating Pattern

Repeating patterns are essential for teaching young children basic math concepts. Patterns offer children the chance to practice sequencing and visualization in a fun and interactive way. Most children begin to recognize patterns from an early age, with basic shapes and colors. However, as they grow, they will need to learn more complex patterns, and it will be essential to teach them the skills required to recognize, understand and create patterns.

Making a repeating pattern could be difficult and daunting for some students. But with practice, they can learn to create fantastic patterns that are both visually-pleasing and meaningful. Here are some activities that teachers can use to teach students how to create repeating patterns:

1. Identifying Patterns

Before students can create their patterns, they need to have a good understanding of what makes a pattern. Start by using examples of repeating patterns like checkerboards and stripes, and ask students to identify where the repetition occurs. You can also use more complex patterns like flower shapes or shapes that have more than 2 colors.

2. Using Manipulatives

Using manipulatives like blocks, counters, shapes, stickers, and beads is a great way to teach children to create repeating patterns. Have students lay out a row of manipulatives in a certain order, and then ask them to repeat the pattern. Encourage students to use different manipulatives and colors to create various patterns.

3. Symmetrical Patterns

Symmetrical patterns can be a bit challenging for younger students, but they will provide a great challenge for older students. Begin by creating a half pattern, then ask students to complete the pattern, so it is symmetrical. For instance, you could create a half butterfly outline and ask them to complete the other half. This activity will teach students to pay attention to the position of their manipulatives and how they can create symmetrical patterns.

4. Pattern Sorting

Pattern sorting is an activity that helps students see the similarities and differences in different patterns. Begin by creating several patterns using different manipulatives and colors. Then ask students to sort the patterns into different categories based on color, shape, and design. Encourage discussion of the students’ thought process behind sorting the patterns.

5. Pattern Design

After students have mastered the previous activities, it is time to let them design their patterns independently. Provide students with paper, pencils, and colored pencils or markers, and encourage them to design their patterns. Ask them to create a pattern with at least three colors or shapes. Once they have finished, have them exchange their pattern with another student and ask the student to replicate their pattern.

In conclusion, activities that teach students to make a repeating pattern can be a fun and engaging way to teach basic math concepts. These activities provide opportunities for students to recognize patterns, use manipulation, and think creatively. By the end of these activities, students should be able to create their repeating patterns seamlessly.

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