At first, it doesn’t seem like colors can be part of math play but they are certainly can. Kids can use colors to explore making color patterns.
Patterning is a terrific brain thinking strategy. It reduces a huge amount of information into a much smaller chunk. In this photo, a child has made a line up math blocks. Instead of having to remember the color of every single block in the entire sequence, it can all be condensed into the bit pink/orange. This isn’t so hard for only a few blocks, but even three or four colors would make it more complicated very quickly.
Kids clothes often make a pattern with colors, like these leggings on Big Sister. These are actually a pattern within a pattern. The first one is a pattern of stripes, then the stripes follow a specific order of colors. One morning when playing with markers, another child made patterns of color circles. This activity was completely child-directed. Figuring out how patterns work, this little one made quite a few using different colors and was quite proud of the achievement.
Our houses and neighborhoods are full of patterns. While the eyes have discovered this pattern in a carpet, the feet are trying to step on particular parts of it, the middle of the big circle and the little blue squares.
Our days follow a pattern, that of getting up, meals, work and play, and going to bed. Our bodies have rhythm patterns of heartbeat and breathing. Language has patterns in words and sentences. It’s easy to see the patterns in math and numbers and hear them in music. Will the pattern of today include some time to play, perhaps with making color patterns?
(Another pattern could be checking the blog tab for a play-of-the-day inspiration.)