Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Pattern and Spatial Awareness Play

I love this Pattern Activity Toy from Discovery Toys (I have seen a lot of similar items here on amazon.com).  My daughter enjoys using the design cards that come with it as well as using the shapes for other fun activities.   Here are some pictures of our fun learning adventures.

These are just some examples of the cards.  Some are fairly easy and have the shape outlines drawn for your child.  The more difficult ones are just open images that your child has to figure out how to fill.


To make the easier cards more difficult and to help her learn how shapes combine to make other shapes I do one half of the design with large shapes and then lay out smaller shapes for her to use to finish the other half of the design.  You can also talk about mirror images and symmetry while doing these type of designs.




Here is another example of how we make the cards more difficult.  We try and only use one color for the whole design (not possible with all cards but fun to try).  This really builds spatial awareness.




I used this card to teach her how two shapes together create a new one.  To make this harder do not use the card so your child can not see the outline of the shape they need (put out a number of shapes so that they have to pick out the correct one).  Another fun activity is to cover up one of the images in the row- for example cover up the semi-circle in the first row, one of the semi-circles in the second row, a square in the third row and the square in the last row.


We also use the shapes to practice completing patterns.  I create a simple pattern and then she has to figure out which shape/color comes next.  Right now I only use a couple shapes and colors in each pattern.  As she gets better I will start making the patterns more complex.

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