Today we were hunting for patterns!  Attached is a blank sheet that students worked on today plus a picture of my “starter” (which I actually did NOT give them to start with!)  This is actually super fun with all ages, so ENJOY!

Students were able to quickly pick up on the idea that the symbol for “4” was used in other places on the page.  They also caught on to the symbol for “3” was used in some other places.  They continued hunting like this for a while.

I went student by student to see where they were with this and when they showed me the number 4, I said “Oh, I thought that was two 2s…?” 😉 and sometimes a student quickly took this and ran—but not always.  So I said “See?  Look at the symbol for “8” (first symbol in 2nd row)… it’s two of the number 4 symbol and it’s in the shape of a 2 symbol…!”  Well… THAT did it!

One student saw two pentagons inside of one another for the number 10 and they would be right, but to fit the pattern, the alternative to what was on the page would be two pentagons—one on top of the other in the pattern of the 2 in the top row.  I didn’t TELL them that because they conceptually understood that there needed to be two of the pentagons.

One student actually noticed that every fourth number had the symbol for “4” in it… and that extended to seeing that the number 2 symbol did that as well…

Another student realized that the symbols for the first 5 numbers were used over and over in the rest of the page… creating somewhat of a “base set” of numbers.

None of the students realized that prime numbers were just true circles – but that was okay!

Their challenge was to decide how the number 30 would look!  If you’re playing at home (and with people who know their multiplication and division facts) you could create patterns for as many numbers as you want and critique each other’s symbol choices!

Science/Math: Number Patterns