Pattern Trains

What activities can I be doing with my daughter (she will be three in October) now that are fun and educational?

You know when kids enter the why, why, why phase or what, what, what phase...sometimes you want to ban questions. But, its really a gift because instead of simply giving an answer - you get to help them learn the process for finding answers. But, here's something they don't ask about, but it might be fun to introduce...

One more idea for educational play...Pattern Trains.

You know how kids are tested in school and all the way through their life on patterns. Somehow, someone important who makes tests thinks patterns are really important. Me, not so much. But, I wanted to try and help "break the code" of patterns. Ultimately, so that my child could start recognizing them early.

You know a lot of kids love trains - well I decided to call patterns - Pattern Trains. And building patterns was just a way of building a long train (except this train does not connect unless its a pattern).

So, the first time I bought Starbursts and did a simple every other pattern. It was more fun (because although we weren't eating the candy, playing with candy is fun). And we would make long red, yellow, red, yellow pattern trains. We would get more complicated with a red, yellow, pink, red, yellow, pink. And I would say something like "Red, yellow, pink, red, yellow, p-p-p- what comes next?"

Somehow thinking of patterns as trains helped unlock the code for my child (and me a little bit too). Anyhow, then we used those colored cotton balls, and kept expanding. We would build a pattern train with toys...lego, teddy bear, lego, teddy bear (the lego being our "connector") trust me - connectors are important to kids. It helped!

Painting: Red Cross Train Passing a Village by Gino Severini

1 comment:

Kelley said...

Sheesh, you are smart, Angie. You have so many great ideas. I love reading this blog.