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The Power of Pattern: Patterning in the Early Years – Hands-on practical and intriguing activities

The Lowdown
The Power of Pattern – Patterning in the Early Years
In a nutshell
Mathematical reasoning / Creative thinking
Key Stage

This is a fantastic resource that tells the story of a project which follows a group of teachers and their classes of three- to five-year-olds as they explore different types of patterns.

The authors have developed this collection of activities which engage children in creative thinking and mathematical reasoning in a range of enjoyable contexts, both indoors and out. Included in the book are learning trajectories, suggestions for practical activities, an example of a pattern lesson, and much more.

The inclusive nature of patterning and the way it can be interwoven throughout the day is a strong theme.

“Part of the appeal of patterns is that they are emotionally satisfying and often beautiful”

Part of the appeal of patterns is that they are emotionally satisfying and often beautiful. They occur in a wide range of contexts, including daily life and the environment, as well as the art and music of different cultures.

Teaching patterning can therefore build on teachers’ and children’s individual interests and strengths, such as creative activities or language, and within contexts as diverse as drumming or forest school.

This is important, because when we enjoy teaching mathematics and are intrigued by it, we are more likely to pass on our enthusiasm to children.

Need to know
  • “It is not often that a book lands in our laps which manages to blend research with practice so effectively and engagingly. This book by Borthwick, Gifford and Thouless, on how mathematical pattern awareness is linked to wider numerical understanding, is certainly one.” Helen Williams


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