# Pattern and Structure

Patterns are essentially relationships with some kind of regularity between the elements. For young children, research suggests there are three main kinds (read our article below for more detail):
1. Shapes with regular features, and shapes made with some equally spaced dots;
2. A repeated sequence;
3. A growing pattern.

Pattern awareness has been described as early algebraic thinking and is important for identifying different kinds of mathematical relationships. Research also shows that young children's ability to identify pattern can predict their mathematical achievement later. The tasks in this feature will help you to develop learners' awareness of pattern and will serve as a springboard to exploring mathematical structures.

The last day for sending in solutions to the live problems is Monday 11 July.

You can watch a recording of the webinar in which we discussed the mathematical thinking which can be prompted by these activities.

### Pattern Making

##### Age 3 to 5
In this activity, there are lots of different patterns for children to make, describe and extend.

### Domino Sequenceslive

##### Age 5 to 7Challenge Level
Find the next two dominoes in these sequences.

### Chairs and Tableslive

##### Age 5 to 7Challenge Level
Make a chair and table out of interlocking cubes, making sure that the chair fits under the table!

### Repeating Patternslive

##### Age 5 to 7Challenge Level
Try continuing these patterns made from triangles. Can you create your own repeating pattern?

### Chain of Changeslive

##### Age 5 to 7Challenge Level
Arrange the shapes in a line so that you change either colour or shape in the next piece along. Can you find several ways to start with a blue triangle and end with a red circle?

### Missing Middleslive

##### Age 5 to 7Challenge Level
Can you work out the domino pieces which would go in the middle in each case to complete the pattern of these eight sets of three dominoes?

##### Age 5 to 11Challenge Level
Try out this number trick. What happens with different starting numbers? What do you notice?

### Play to 37live

##### Age 7 to 11Challenge Level
In this game for two players, the idea is to take it in turns to choose 1, 3, 5 or 7. The winner is the first to make the total 37.

### Tables Without Tens

##### Age 7 to 11Challenge Level
Investigate and explain the patterns that you see from recording just the units digits of numbers in the times tables.

### Up and Down Staircases

##### Age 7 to 11Challenge Level
One block is needed to make an up-and-down staircase, with one step up and one step down. How many blocks would be needed to build an up-and-down staircase with 5 steps up and 5 steps down?

### Sticky Triangleslive

##### Age 7 to 11Challenge Level
Can you continue this pattern of triangles and begin to predict how many sticks are used for each new "layer"?