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# This lesson is on patterns, adding, and counting

Subject:

Math

Grades:

PreK, K, 1

Dawn Lutz

Jennifer Bullis

Pamela Blake

Topics:

patterns. adding.
counting

Grade Level:

first grade;
level of difficulty can be adjusted!

Name of activity:

Ladybugs
and Leaves

Materials needed:

I leaf
work mat per group

10 Ladybug manipulatives per group

Purpose:

The
purpose of this activity is to have children investigate different
ways a number can be expressed as a sum.

Description of Activity:

Divide students into pairs and distribute the work
mats and the ladybugs. Plan time for the students to make up stories
and act out for each other.

Bring the group together by telling the children
to take out six ladybugs. Next, the teacher should tell a made
up story about the six ladybugs. Ask students to model the story
by placing three ladybugs on each leaf. Ask groups to find and
record all possible combinations for the sum of six. Ask students

“Can you put the lady bugs on the leaves another way
? How many different arrangements can you find?

(Note: I
+5 and 5 + 1 are different arrangements). Record the student’s
findings on the chalkboard in an organized manner (See diagram
one). Encourage students to find the patterns that emerge by asking

“How do you know if you found all possible arrangements
of six?” (Example:

the first number gets smaller by 1,
the second number gets larger by 1, and the answer is always 6).

Have students predict the number of possible arrangements
for different numbers of ladybugs. Ask students the following
questions.

Do

you

think
the larger numbers have more arrangements than smaller
numbers ? How could we find out ? Let ‘s try it
with three ladybugs. How many ways can you
arrange

them?
Now

try four ladybugs.

Show students how to make a chart for
recording their findings (See diagram twos. Ask students to predict
how many there will be for eight’ For twenty – two? How did
you figure that out?

Extension:

The ladybugs can also be used for subtraction problems.
Give the students ten ladybugs. Ask them to place four ladybugs
on one leaf. Then ask

How many will be on the other leaf? If
y ou her – e eight ladybugs altogether and three of them are
on one leaf; how many are on the other leaf?

Let the students
discuss strategies for solving the problems.

The ladybugs can also be used for estimation problems.
Give the students different sizes of ladybugs. Then ask,

How
many big ladybugs do you think will cover this leaf? How many
little ladybugs will cover the other leaf?

Let the students
discuss strategies for solving estimation problems.

Diagram One:

1 + 5 = 6

2 + 4 = 6

3 + 3 = 6

4 + 2 = 6

5 + 1 = 6

Diagram Two:

Number of ladybugs

3

4

5

6

7

Number of arrangements

2

3

4

5

6