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Exploring Maths, Music, & Patterns

Explore Music, Maths, Patterns

Maths learning can be fun and engaging for children, as we recently explored in our Online STEM Workshop: “The Magic of Maths in Music, Rhythm, & Patterns”. We explored how to introduce mathematical concepts to young children in an age-appropriate manner and the magical connection between music and mathematics, as well as the rhythmic patterns that form the foundation of both disciplines.

Read on for more ECE resources that will support you to embed mathematics and musical learning in your own teaching practice. (You can also join our Facebook group “Early STEM Educators Network” to exchange ideas and questions with other educators about embedding STEM, mathematics, and music in your service or classroom!)

The Australian Education Research Organisation’s Mathematical Learning Trajectories ECE Practice Guide is a useful document to support your planning around maths explorations with children. These learning trajectories are designed to help you observe children’s progress in mathematical thinking, and provide you with the appropriate language to document children’s learning and discuss this with colleagues and families. The resource includes trajectories related to:

🌀 Patterns and predictions
🟧 Shapes and spatial thinking
📐 Measurement and data
🧮 Quantity and counting

🎶 Video: Green Grow the Rushes Oh
🎶 Video: Ha Ha this-a-way
🎶 Video: Brown Bear Brown Bear game
🎶 When Goldilocks Went to the House of the Bears
🎶 Punchinello

🎶 “Stand Up, Sit Down” by Patty Shukla is just one song that can support children to develop their spatial awareness skills using simple actions. You can even invite the children to see who can follow the movement instructions fastest!

🎶 Bend and Stretch is another great song to encourage children to get moving while developing their spatial awareness and mathematical understanding.

🎶 Baby goes Bumpy Boo
🎶 1,2,3 babies on my knee

🎶 One Grey Elephant supports children’s sequencing skills. Sequencing supports children to think about what comes next and also what came before, which is an important part of mathematical thinking such as counting, addition, and subtraction.

🎶 “Tooty Ta” by Jack Hartmann
🎶 “Must Be Santa” by She and Him

🥁 Video: Heartbeat. Patterns are present in children’s lives, even in utero. Heartbeats are a pattern that they’re hearing all the time. Show this video to them and ask them to clap the beat of their own heart!

🥁 Book: Hand, Fingers, Thumb

🥁 Video: Tonal Pattern

Explore Music, Maths, Patterns with Lego

🥁 Lego beat and rhythm has an image of different Lego blocks and equivalent beats. It explains how to teach music theory.

If you find this a bit technical, explore beats first: The 2×2 blocks are one beat, the 4×2 blocks are two beats, and the 8×2 blocks are 4 beats. If this is hard to clap, use a triangle, xylophone, piano, or just use your voice and say duuum for the length of the beats. Once the children understand these, start to make different patterns with them.

To explore more music and maths explorations for children, you can buy a recording of our online workshop here.

Develop your STEM skills with our pedagogy-based STEM PD:

Facebook Group: Little Scientists Early STEM Educators Network
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