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Fun With Shapes: Exciting Pattern Activities for Preschoolers

pattern activities for kids

Learning about shapes and patterns is fun for little kids. It’s like playing a game that helps them understand the world better. When preschoolers play with patterns, they’re not just having fun; they’re getting ready for all the cool stuff they’ll learn in school.

We’ve done many fun and easy activities for preschoolers together. From making cool art to playing games outside, each activity is made to keep preschoolers happy and learning. As we start these activities, kids won’t be playing. They’ll be growing their brains, learning how to solve problems, and getting ready for even bigger adventures in learning.

The Magic of Patterns in Preschool Learning

Patterns help kids think and understand math better, making them essential for little ones as they start learning. When kids notice patterns like leaves or how their toys are arranged, it helps them see the world intelligently. Parents and teachers need to make learning about patterns fun using games and activities. This way, while playing, kids start to see the patterns around them, from the stars in the sky to how their snacks are lined up, making learning a big adventure they get to be part of every day.

Exciting Pattern Activities for Preschoolers

There are lots of things you can utilize to introduce patterns to kids. From sorting objects by colors and shapes to creating designs with blocks or stickers, these activities engage and teach preschoolers in a fun and interactive way. Let’s explore the world of patterns together!

1. Pattern Sorting


Pattern sorting activities offer an interactive and hands-on approach to help preschoolers develop pattern recognition skills. Here’s how you can guide a child through this activity:

  • Gather objects or pictures with different patterns, such as stripes, polka dots, or shapes.
  • Introduce the concept of patterns, explaining how they repeat in a specific way.
  • Lay the objects or pictures in front of the child and encourage them to observe the patterns closely.
  • Prompt the child to sort the items into groups based on their patterns—for example, placing all striped objects/pictures in one group and all polka-dotted ones in another.
  • Offer guidance and praise as they recognize and categorize the patterns correctly.

2. Pattern Tower Building

Get ready to stack and create with this engaging pattern activity! Encourage your preschooler to build a tower using various colored blocks in a specific pattern sequence.

  • Start by selecting different colored blocks.
  • Ask the child to stack the blocks following a specific color pattern, such as red, blue, yellow, red, blue, and yellow.
  • Encourage them to continue the pattern until the tower is complete.
  • Discuss the pattern sequence and admire the colorful tower together.

3. Color Patterns

Introducing patterns through colors is a great way to engage preschoolers. Here is how you can help them create color patterns using various objects:

  • Gather a collection of objects like beads, blocks, or candies in different colors.
  • Begin by demonstrating a simple pattern using two colors. For example, arrange the objects in a pattern of blue, red, blue, and red.
  • Encourage the preschoolers to create their own color patterns, either by copying the pattern you made or by creating their own unique patterns.
  • Provide support and guidance as needed, ensuring they understand the concept of repeating colors in a specific order.
  • Celebrate their achievements and encourage them to explore more complex patterns using additional colors.

4. Shape Patterns

shape patterns

Shape patterns are a fun and engaging way to introduce preschoolers to the concept of patterns while also helping them develop their fine motor skills and shape recognition.

  • Provide the child with various blocks or toys in different shapes, such as circles, squares, and triangles.
  • Encourage the child to arrange the shapes in a specific repeating pattern, such as a circle, square, triangle, or circle. Guide them to continue the pattern until they have created a visually appealing and orderly sequence.

5. Sound Patterns

One exciting way to engage preschoolers in pattern activities is by encouraging them to create sound patterns. By clapping, tapping, or using musical instruments in a specific sequence, children can have fun while developing their auditory discrimination and sequencing skills. How to Do This Activity:

  • Gather various sound-making materials, such as clappers, rhythm sticks, shakers, or pots and pans.
  • Start by demonstrating a simple sound pattern to the preschoolers, for example, clap-tap-tap-clap.
  • Encourage the children to listen carefully and repeat the pattern after you.
  • Gradually increase the complexity of the patterns, using different combinations of sounds.
  • Let the children take turns being the leader, creating their own unique sound patterns for the group to replicate.
  • Enhance the activity by incorporating movement, such as stomping or hopping, between sound patterns.

6. Story Patterns

This activity introduces children to stories with repeating patterns or sequences, fostering their cognitive and narrative comprehension skills. By identifying the patterns in stories, preschoolers enhance their ability to predict, sequence, and understand the structure of narratives, which are crucial for language and literacy development.

  • Choose a simple picture book with a clear, repetitive pattern.
  • Read the story to the children, emphasizing the recurring sequence or elements.
  • Pause at intervals and encourage the children to predict the next part based on the pattern.
  • Ask open-ended questions to guide their understanding of the pattern within the story.

7. Playdough Patterns

 a child playing a playdough

Playing with playdough allows preschoolers to explore patterns while stimulating their senses and creativity. As they manipulate the colorful dough, they enhance their fine motor skills, understand sequencing, and engage in imaginative expression. How to do this activity:

  • Provide preschoolers with playdough in various vibrant colors
  • Encourage them to roll, shape, and stack the playdough to create simple patterns
  • Guide them in imitating provided patterns or generating their own unique designs with the playdough

8. Collage Patterns

Making collages with patterned designs offers preschoolers a great opportunity to explore creativity and enhance their understanding of patterns. With different materials like colored paper, stickers, and sequins, preschoolers can develop fine motor skills, learn about colors and shapes, and explore patterns such as stripes, dots, or zigzags.

How to do this activity:

  • Provide preschoolers with various materials for making collages, including colored paper, stickers, and sequins.
  • Introduce different types of patterns, such as stripes, dots, or zigzags.
  • Encourage preschoolers to create collages using the provided materials and patterns, either by following a template or creating a freeform design.
  • Observe and celebrate the preschoolers’ unique creations, providing positive reinforcement and guiding them toward further pattern exploration and discovery.

9. Outdoor Scavenger Hunt

Embarking on an outdoor scavenger hunt with preschoolers not only offers endless fun but also provides an opportunity for them to learn about patterns present in nature. By engaging in this activity, children can enhance their observation skills, understanding of sequences, and ability to identify and classify patterns. How to do this activity:

  • Begin by creating a list of objects or patterns for the preschoolers to find and identify during a nature walk or outdoor exploration.
  • Examples of patterns could include finding various shaped leaves, spotting different colored flowers, identifying different types of rocks, or locating objects in a specific sequence (e.g., big rock, small rock, big rock).
  • Make sure to discuss the patterns found in nature with the preschoolers as they explore. Encourage them to share their observations and ask questions about the patterns they discover.
  • Provide guidance and encouragement when necessary, helping the children identify and classify the patterns they encounter.
  • Emphasize the importance of respecting nature and leaving objects as they were found, especially if they are living things.
  • After the scavenger hunt, gather the children together to discuss their findings. Have them share their favorite patterns and what they learned from the experience.

10. Hopscotch Patterns

two children playing hopscotch

Playing hopscotch with different patterns or shapes is a fun and active way for preschoolers to develop their gross motor skills, balance, and coordination. In addition to physical development, hopscotch also offers an opportunity for preschoolers to learn about sequencing, patterns, and following instructions.

How to do this activity:

  • Draw or create a hopscotch grid on a flat surface using chalk or tape.
  • Introduce preschoolers to different patterns or shapes to incorporate into the hopscotch grid, such as squares, circles, triangles, or zigzags.
  • Teach preschoolers the basic rules of hopscotch: hop on one foot into each square, avoiding the lines.
  • Guide preschoolers to follow specific patterns as they navigate through the hopscotch grid. For example, they can hop in a patterned sequence like circle, triangle, square, or follow a zigzag pattern with their hops.
  • Encourage preschoolers to take turns and challenge them to create their own patterns for others to follow.

11. Pattern Memory Game

Playing the Pattern Memory Game can help preschoolers develop visual memory, concentration, and pattern recognition skills. As they engage in this fun and interactive activity, they learn to identify and recall different patterns, enhancing their cognitive abilities and critical thinking.

How to do this activity:

  • Gather pattern cards or objects with various designs or colors.
  • Place the cards or objects facedown on a table or the floor.
  • Let the child pick two cards at a time to uncover, trying to match the patterns.
  • Encourage the child to focus on the patterns and remember the location of the cards they’ve turned over.
  • When a match is found, discuss the patterns and celebrate their success.
  • If there’s no match, turn the cards back over and continue taking turns.
  • Continue playing until all the matches have been found, allowing the child to practice their memory and pattern recognition skills in an enjoyable way.

12. Pattern Art

a woman guiding two young children  in using brush paint

Engaging in pattern art allows preschoolers to explore their creativity while developing their understanding of patterns and enhancing their fine motor skills. Through this activity, children can express themselves artistically while also gaining a deeper understanding of how patterns can be used to create visually appealing artwork. How to do this activity:

  • Provide the child with various craft supplies such as markers, paper, stickers, and other materials.
  • Encourage them to brainstorm different patterns, such as stripes, dots, or zigzags, that they can incorporate into their artwork.
  • Let the child experiment with creating patterns using the materials provided.
  • Talk to the child about their patterns and ask them questions about their choices, fostering their critical thinking skills.
  • Support them in exploring different techniques, such as layering patterns or combining different materials to create texture.
  • Give the child the freedom to express their imagination and creativity through their pattern art.
  • Once the art piece is complete, take the time to discuss the patterns they used and appreciate their effort and creativity.
  • Display their artwork proudly to celebrate their accomplishment and encourage their continued exploration of patterns in art.

Wrapping Up

As our children start exploring patterns through engaging activities, they enjoy learning while building essential skills that will serve them throughout their lives. These activities are fun, crucial for developing critical thinking and problem-solving abilities, and spark lifelong curiosity. Focusing on the whimsical exploration of shapes and patterns ensures their playtime is enriching and enjoyable.

Baby Steps Daycare is your perfect partner in nurturing your child’s creativity and intellectual growth. Our team is committed to providing immersive learning experiences tailored to stimulate young minds with care and expertise. For more information on how we can help shape your child’s future, contact us at 347-960-8334 for Forest Hills and 347-644-5528 for Rego Park or visit our website at https://nybabysteps.com/. Let’s work together to develop the architects of tomorrow.