Learning to recognize and create patterns is a basic intuitive mathematical skill. Patterns can be found in math, at home, and in the everyday world. Parents and teachers can encourage learning about patterns with Wikki Stix created fine motor chain links. As kids practice, gain confidence with patterning, and develop skills, they will begin to recognize and call out patterns they find at home, outside, or in the larger community.

## Basic Patterning Skills with Wikki Stix Created Fine Motor Chain Links

Important Basic Patterning Concepts:

• A pattern is comprised of at least two colors (or other items/variables) that repeat in the same sequence.
• Start with a basic pattern of two colors which is an AB pattern with red=A and blue=B (ex: red/blue/red/blue). As kids gain confidence in recognizing the basic AB pattern, more complex patterns with additional colors can be added.
• As kids practice with patterning with Wikki Stix, encourage kids to look around the house, outside in nature, or in the community for items that form a pattern in the everyday world.

Materials needed:

• Red, Blue, Yellow, and Green Wikki Stix (add more colors as kids practice and gain confidence with patterning).
• Scissors (optional)
• Free Printable Wikki Stix Chain Link Patterning Mat – print here.

Directions:

1. Print the Wikki Stix Chain Link Patterning Mat (laminate the page for durability if desired).
2. Cut the patterning strips apart.
3. Invite kids to find the patterning strip with the basic AB (two color) pattern.
4. Set out the colors of Wikki Stix and see if the kids can recreate the basic AB chain link pattern with red and blue Wikki Stix (see photo). Ask kids what color would come next in the patterning sequence?
5. Invite kids to look at the additional patterning strips and try to determine what pattern is shown on each of the individual strips. Note: remember A=color number 1, B=color number 2, C=color number 3, and D=color number 4. Can the kids determine what color comes next to complete the pattern on each of the patterning strips?
6. Have the kids recreate and finish each of the patterns on the strips with the corresponding colors of Wikki Stix created chain links.
7. Keep Wikki Stix available so kids can practice and create their own patterns using Wikki Stix to make fine motor chain links.

As kids are given plenty of opportunities to practice creating Wikki Stix fine motor chain link patterns, they will begin to find patterns EVERYWHERE (on stop lights, food displays at the grocery store, flags, clothing patterns, flowers and other nature items, book displays, rings on a tree stump, and many other places) in the daily world. Practicing patterning with Wikki Stix is not only FUN, but it will allow kids to develop basic mathematical concepts for future intuitive math skills.

For more ways to PLAY and LEARN with Wikki Stix, please visit:

Tessellating Shapes with Wikki Stix – a free lesson plan (for home or classroom)

Playing with Wikki Stix to Develop Critical Thinking Skills

Wikki Stix Paper Chain Link Building Challenge – a free lesson plan (for home or classroom)

Print one of the FREE dot-to-dot templates and invite kids to create color patterns with Wikki Stix!