I think one of the most important concepts we work on in Kindergarten is Patterning. It is so essential for young children in both early math and reading. Each year at this time we spend about three weeks on solid instruction and practice in Patterning. I think it sets a successful pace for the rest of the school year. My little ones begin to see and hear patterns EVERYWHERE! Even after our unit of study is complete, I continue to teach about patterns by infusing them into our daily learning environment. It's like a never ending pattern hunt!
I am always searching for good storybooks on patterning. Here are a few favorites from my classroom library that focus on patterns in sound, movement and the environment.
These next books are favorites for patterns in reading.
Joy Cowley wrote three of these books. She is a fantastic children's author who frequently uses patterns to build fluency. Her books are among my students' most requested read alouds!
Some of the fun Patterning activities we do include:
A Pattern Walk through the school campus. It is amazing what patterns kids find in carpet, ceiling tiles, concrete block walls, windows. You name it....they find it!
A Pattern Gallery in our classroom. I dump about 500 manipulatives of different shapes, colors and sizes on the learning carpet. Each child chooses 6-8 and builds a pattern at their table. When everyone is finished, I play relaxing piano music and the kids visit the tables as though they are an art gallery. Each child's pattern becomes a work of art! When it is clean up time it becomes a great sorting activity as all 500 manipulatives go back into their correct boxes.
Partner Patterns in which kids take turns with a partner to create, then copy and extend each other's pattern.