Creating Patterns in Nature

Submitted by: Alexandra Lamb
Grade level: elementary
Core Competencies: creative-thinking,communication,social-responsibility
Subject Disciplines: outdoor-education,math

Location: Outdoor space (e.g. school grounds, forest, garden, etc.)

Objectives:

Kindergarten:

–       I can extend repeating patterns.

–       I can create repeating patterns.

–       I can name the missing elements in a pattern.

Grade One:

–       I can identify the pattern core.

–       I can extend repeating patterns with multiple elements and attributes.

–       I can create repeating patterns with multiple elements and attributes.

–       I can name the missing elements in a pattern.

Grade Two:

–       I can identify the pattern core.

–       I can extend repeating patterns.

–       I can create repeating patterns.

–       I can extend increasing patterns.

–       I can create increasing patterns.

–       I can name the missing elements in a pattern.

Grade Three:

–       I can identify the pattern core.

–       I can extend increasing patterns.

–       I can create increasing patterns.

–       I can extend decreasing patterns.

–       I can create decreasing patterns.

–       I can name the missing elements in a pattern.

FNESC First Peoples Principles of Learning (FPPL):

Learning is holistic, reflexive, reflective, experiential and relational (focused on connectedness, on reciprocal relationships, and a sense of place).

 

Safety Concerns:

–       Perform a safety check, scanning the outdoor space for hazards, before students begin this activity. 

–       Discuss with students what they should and should not pick up (any plants they should not be touching), along with what they should do should they find hazards such as glass.

–       Set boundaries before sending students off.

–       Ensure students know the meeting spot and signal for when you call them back.

Materials:

–       Teacher clipboard, assessment checklist, pen/pencil

–       First aid kit

–       Whistle

 

Lesson/Skill Development:

1.     After arriving at your outdoor space, scanning for hazards, and setting boundaries, go over safety procedures such as poisonous plants in the area, where the meeting spot is, and what the meeting signal will be.

2.     Begin to discuss examples of loose parts that students may choose to use when creating their patterns. It is important students understand that they are using items found on the forest floor, rather than taking living items such as flowers and leaves that have not already fallen. Some examples of items that you may find are rocks, leaves, sticks, shells, etc.

3.     Make the working criteria clear. Are students working independently or in partners? How many patterns are they making, or for how long? Should students come find you to show you their work, or will they stay at their spot until you come to them?

4.     Send students off to begin creating patterns.

5.     During this time, you can help students get started, circulate to check-in to see how everyone is doing, and begin to take assessment notes. As you circulate you can ask students the following questions:

–       What is the pattern core for the pattern you have created?

–       What would come next in your pattern sequence?

6.     When you are nearing the end of your patterning time, call students in and consider doing a gallery walk so students can see what others have created. Ask students to consider:

–       What is the pattern core for the pattern you have created?

–       What would come next in your pattern sequence?

 

Adaptions/Inclusive Learning Opportunities:

Kindergarten: Repeating patterns with two or three elements

Grade One: Repeating patterns with multiple elements and attributes

Grade Two: Repeating and increasing patterns

Grade Three: Increasing and decreasing patterns

–       Students may have an adult or peer show them pattern examples, before they create their own.

–       Students may choose to work individually or with a partner. 

–       Students may have an older student ‘teach’ them, assisting with pattern creations. 

–       Students will choose to create patterns that meet their learning needs.

Social Contexts:

–       Opportunities for students to work in partners

–       Opportunities for students to work in multi-age groups

–       Opportunities for students to ‘teach a peer’

Sustainability:

Students will create patterns in nature, using loose parts found on the forest floor (e.g. rocks, leaves, sticks, shells, etc.).

Assessment:

–       Anecdotal notes

       Reflection questions during circulation and gallery walk

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