Grade: Elementary
Subject: Literature

#3232. Patterns and Literature

Literature, level: Elementary
Posted Mon Oct 11 05:13:13 PDT 2004 by Jill Falkosky (
University of Pittsburgh at Johnstown, Pennsylvania, USA
Materials Required: "Peter Cottontail" book, 2 egg patterns for each child, coloring media of your choice and any other
Activity Time: 45 minutes
Concepts Taught: Patterns, story elements

• Children will be able to create their own patterns.
• Children will be able to discuss and name a reason why Easter Eggs were/are used for the Easter celebration.
• Children will be able to identify the elements of literature (characters, setting, and the series of events).
Subject Integration: Art
Materials: "Peter Cottontail" book, 2 egg patterns for each child, coloring media of your choice and any other items for decoration
Safety Precautions: Children may need to be reminded that scissors are for cutting paper, not people.
Vocabulary: pattern, beeswax, hollowing
Instructional Procedures:
• Anticipatory Set:
To begin the lesson I gathered the children at the back of the room in the "reading area." I then began a discussion, with a series of questions, about Easter and Easter Eggs.
1. Who all in the room celebrates Easter? (luckily for me, they all did)
2. When I say, "celebrate Easter," what do you think of? What special things does your family do to celebrate?
3. Does anyone decorate Easter Eggs?
4. How do decorate them?
I then explained a little about why eggs are a tradition in the celebration of
• Eggs are a symbol of life. This is significant because Easter is when Christians celebrate the rising of Christ.
• They were originally decorated with bright colors to symbolize the coming of spring.
• They were given, as gifts from loved ones, like Valentines on Valentine's Day.
• There were many different methods for decorating: beeswax, dying, painting, attaching plants before boiling, and hollowing before they decorate.
• Two of the main games played with Easter Eggs today are egg hunts and egg races.
We then discussed what a pattern is and the class came up with some examples of patterns in nature, in the classroom, in the school, and anywhere else they could think that a pattern occurred.
Developmental Activities:
We then read the book. Discussing throughout the different characters, what the problem is, and the series of events that lead to solving the problem. Children also were encouraged to make predictions about what was going to happen every few pages. At the end of the book we recapped the elements of the story and discussed what other stories this book reminded them of.
We then reviewed what a pattern is and discussed how they were going to make their own patterns on egg shapes that we would then attach together to make them
For the closure activity the class made 3D eggs to hang from the classroom ceiling. They were able to decorate these eggs completely on their own creating their own unique patterns.
Assessment: The assessment was conducted through observation throughout the classroom discussion and the correct completion of their 3D eggs.
Special Needs Adaptations: For a hearing impaired child I would attempt to obtain a larger version of the book being read. I would also make my example 3D egg in class to show the children what they are to be doing rather than to just verbally give directions. I would also attempt to write a simple version of the directions for the child to read.
Technology Integration:
For a classroom with one computer:
For a classroom with one computer I would place the children into small groups. While they were given time to complete the art project, I would have them take turns in their groups using the computer to examine the webpage After they have had about ten minutes to read about Easter Patterns and Easter Games, I would have them go back to their desks and finish their art project. They would also have to write a journal entry describing their favorite Easter game and why they liked it.

For a classroom with a few computers I would place the children into small groups. Instead of having each group go back to the computer one at a time, I would have two or three groups working, depending on the number of computers available. I would not have all groups working at the computers at one time to decrease the amount of chitter chatter and unrelated activities. They would exam the same webpage and write the same journal entry.

For a classroom with a computer for every child I would not place them into groups to view the webpage above. Each child would do so on their own and write a short journal entry in their on-line journal, or in a Word program and print it out for me to grade. As an extension or if time permitted, I would also encourage them to use the Paint program present on most computers (or any program they could use to do art with that was available) to develop an Easter egg on the computer. This could be an egg that they design and fill in with colors on the computer, or they could just design an egg with a design on it and print it for a coloring page for themselves and/or classmates. With an older grade, I would have them make this pattern for their