Beacon Lesson Plan Library

You're a Pattern and I Know It

Sandi King
Bay District Schools


This is the third lesson in the unit plan, Patterns, Patterns Everywhere. Students identify, predict, extend, create, and describe patterns according to their attributes. Students transfer patterns to a different medium.


The student sorts and classifies objects by color, shape, size, or kind.

The student predicts and extends existing patterns using concrete materials.

The student transfers patterns from one medium to another (for example, actions, sounds, or concrete objects).


-Charted song "If You're Happy and You Know It", [Wee Sing, Children's Songs and Fingerplays]. New York: Price Stem Slogan, Inc., Penguin Putnam Books, 1977. (audio tape)
-Dr. Seuss. [Green Eggs and Ham]. New York: Random House, 1960.
-Rhythm instruments (triangles, sticks, drums, sand blocks) for each child
-Transparent strips of neon colored books covers
-A set of pattern blocks
-Pattern block cutouts
-Summative Assessment 1, Pattern Block Patterns from the unit's associated files


1. Locate and become familiar with the book [Green Eggs and Ham].
2. Locate and become familiar with the song "If You Are Happy and You Know It". Write the words to the song on a class chart.

3. Locate a roll of transparent, neon colored book covers. It is available at discount stores. Cut several strips of this the size that will cover the words on your class chart.

4. Locate a set of pattern blocks. If working in groups, you need a set per group.

5. Locate rhythm band instruments. You should have an instrument for each student.

6. Cut a variety of pattern block shapes. Be sure to use the correct color for each shape. These are not random colors associated with the shapes. Many schools have an Ellison dye for cutting these pattern. Exact shapes and colors are included in the attached file.

7. Download and duplicate the Pattern Block Patterns assessment tool available from the unit's associated files. You will need one for each student. If they can be copied in color, the color and shape attributes to the pattern blocks can be used. If they must be duplicated in black and white, only the shape attribute can be used.


1. Review the definition of patterns. Have students share any new pattern detective work they have done by showing or explaining new patterns they have discovered.

2. During whole group time, read [Green Eggs and Ham]; by Dr. Seuss. Ask students to identify the patterns demonstrated in the book. Students participate in a choral response of the pattern as the story is reread.

3. During language arts time, sing the song, “If You're Happy and You Know It.” Point to the words on the class chart as it is sung. Have students identify the patterns in the song. Use the pattern identified as a choral response when resinging the song. Have students locate patterns in the text from the class chart. Students use colored transparent book cover strips to highlight the patterns on the class chart. Formatively assess the identification and use of the pattern in the choral response. These patterns can be in the oral language or in written text. Give corrective and affirmative feedback. Affirmative feedback should verbally restate the attributes of the pattern with praise added for successful completion. Restating the attributes helps cement the concept in the student's mind. Corrective feedback should be a guide for the student to discover the mistake and make corrections. Teachers can lead the verbalizing of the attributes of the patterns and then guide the student to predict the next piece of the pattern. Assistance may be given to students who can successfully identify the pattern but cannot manipulate the highlight strips due to motor skill delays.

4. After the highlighting activity, sing the song again. Change the words and actions of the song to transfer the patterns from one medium to another such as from sounds to silent actions. The teacher models this activity by making up a verse such as: If you're happy and you know it, wiggle your thumb. Then the next time through the song, leave off the singing of wiggle your thumb and just do the action of wiggling your thumb. This transfers the pattern from words to actions.

5. During music time, model a musical pattern using instruments, such as triangles, drums, sticks, and sand blocks. Have the students take turns identifying, predicting, extending, and creating musical rhythm patterns using the instruments. Groups of students could play the instruments in sequence to form a pattern, or one student could create a pattern with the rhythm played with one instrument. Students should verbalize the attributes of the pattern and predict by answering the question, "What should come next?"

6. During math time, make people patterns from the students in the class, such as boy, boy, girl or shorts, jeans, shorts. Students identify the people pattern created by verbally discussing the attributes of the pattern. Students verbalize their predictions of what comes next and then extend the pattern. Students give the correct label to each pattern. Remember to give feedback as the students demonstrate their knowledge. Give affirmative feedback by restating the student's response with praise. All other students will be learning as the affirmative feedback is given by restating the student's response. Corrective feedback should be given by guiding the student to the discovery of the pattern. Students who are having difficulty identifying patterns may need the pattern presented in a different medium. Visual learners may need visual clues, whereas auditory learners may need auditory clues. Most students of this age need information presented in a multitude of ways, including manipulatives for their concrete needs. Remember to present information in as many ways as possible in order to best meet the needs of all students.

7. During math time, students use pattern blocks to create and extend patterns. Students create a pattern and allow the other students to guess the pattern. The student guessing the pattern correctly gets to predict what comes next and extend the pattern.

8. During whole group or small group, depending on your adult assistance, model creating a pattern designed with the pattern blocks by gluing pattern block cutouts on a class chart, then writing the label A,B,A to match the newly created pattern. Students then practice creating, predicting and extending patterns by using the pattern block cutouts and adding their patterns to the class chart. This activity should serve as a preparation for Summative Assessment #1, Pattern Block Patterns.

9. Share the Pattern Block Patterns assessment tool with the students. Formatively assess the student's ability to create, predict, and extend the patterns. Give corrective and affirmative feedback through restating and guiding. Verbalizing your pattern attributes as you create it for the chart is a good model for the students to do the same when creating their patterns. This verbalizing allows for insight into the student's thinking and allows for specific feedback. For instance, when a student states that the pattern is red, red, blue, red, blue, you can guide the student to identify the attribute further by saying, "First, you told me red, red and then you said just one red. What can you do so that the pattern repeats itself?" The child can then choose to delete one red from the first set or add a red to the second set. The pattern is still owned by the student but is now following the rules.

10. After the class activity above, students will be prepared to use pattern blocks cutouts to predict and extend the pattern started on the Pattern Block Patterns assessment sheet. Students then design their own patterns, attach them to the assessment sheets, and label them. This activity is added to their individual pattern books as page two of six. This activity also serves as a summative assessment.


Formative assessment of all standards addressed in this lesson should be a constant part of the activities. Affirmative and corrective feedback increases understanding. For further details, see steps #6 and #8 in Procedures.

Summative Assessment 1, Pattern Block Patterns is available from the unit's associated files. This is a constructed response assessment.


he Beacon Unit Plan associated with this lesson can be viewed by clicking on the link located at the top of this page or by using the following URL: Once you select the unit’s link, scroll to the bottom of the unit plan page to find the section, “Associated Files.” This section contains links to the Unit Plan Overview, Diagnostic and Summative Assessments, and other associated files (if any).

Attached Files

A graphic description of pattern blocks     File Extension: pdf

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