momstown kids brought home some acorns this week, and we turned it into a great patterning practice game!
Because the sides and tops of acorns look different, you can use them to build patterns in a number of different ways!
How do I teach patterning with my child? The most simple form of a pattern is A-B-A-B-A-B… Start there. Build a pattern yourself, and say the pattern 'rule' out loud as you build it, for example "acorn top, acorn bottom, acorn top, acorn bottom, acorn top…" then ask 'what comes next?' to see if your child can continue the pattern.
Some children will catch on quickly, others will take some time and practice. Don't worry – just let them experiment with their own patterns and sorting, and eventually it will 'click' for them.
Once you've mastered the A-B-A-B pattern, you can move onto A-B-B, A-B-C and other more complex patterns. Using colours and shapes is also a great way to visually show children how patterns work.
You don't have to invest in special blocks or manipulatives – bring in some fall leaves in different colours and create a pattern with them!