Grade Levels: K-3

In this set of activities adaptable for grades K-3, parents and educators will find ideas for teaching about patterns. These activities are designed to complement the BrainPOP Jr. Patterns topic page, which includes a movie, quizzes, online games, printable activities, and more.

Classroom Activities for Teaching Patterns

Clap and Tap
Clap and tap out a pattern for your students to follow, such as clap, clap, tap, clap, clap, tap, clap, clap, tap. Make sure you repeat the pattern at least three times to help students find the unit. Stop the pattern and have students figure out what comes next, a clap or a tap. Then invite student volunteers to clap and tap their own patterns for other students to guess.


Post a pattern for your students to follow, such as AABB, ABC, ABCD, etc. Then have them use whatever items they wish to create the pattern. They may want to use beads, marbles, pattern blocks, connecting cubes, or draw pictures. Have students check over each other’s work. Then have student volunteers share their patterns with the class.

Missing Link

Have small groups or pairs use pattern blocks or use small items to create a pattern. Then have them remove one of the blocks or items to create a missing space. Have other group members figure out the missing item. Encourage your students to explore patterns that go beyond color or shape, such as texture and luster.

Family and Homeschool Activities for Teaching Patterns

Pattern Walk

Go for a walk with your child in your neighborhood, in your home, or in a store. Have your child find as many patterns as he or she can and challenge him or her to record the patterns with words, numbers, or pictures. What is the unit of the pattern? How are the patterns alike or different? Your child will find that there are patterns everywhere!

We Got the Beat

Play music with regular beats and listen together. You may want to use examples from hip-hop music, classical, or world music to expose your child to different genres. Have him or her describe the rhythm and if possible, have your child clap or stomp out the beat to match the song.

Filed as:  Geometry, K-3, Math, Patterns