Although Noah has demonstrated patterning ability in play, he has not been able to duplicate a color pattern in any of our sit-down sessions. In thinking of how I can give him the support he needs to master this task, I made up some patterning strips. Since he does demonstrate very good matching capabilities, I’ve capitalized on this ability and am using it to bridge the gap to patterning. In putting, let’s say, a blue object on a blue square, green on green, blue on blue, green on green, he is accomplishing patterning in the background, while in the foreground he is simply matching. It is just a matter of time before he recognizes what he is doing; in the meantime, he is physically performing the task. I like to think of it as putting the wiring in place.
Here are printable blank patterning strips I made over at www.mrsriley.com. Just color in the pattern you’re using, laminate, cut apart horizontal strips, and you’re ready to go.
And if you prefer them pre-colored:
I used these by putting the colored objects (today was silk butterflies) in front of Noah, pointing to the first colored box, and asking Noah, “What color?” He signed the correct color and then placed the correctly colored object on the square, and then we moved on to the next square. I think next time, I will make a patterning strip for myself that matches his and I will model putting the correctly colored objects on my strip and try to have him imitate my pattern. When he has mastered that, I’ll point to the boxes on my strip, and have him put the objects on his strip. The last progression will be me having a patterning strip and Noah will place the correctly colored objects in front of him in the order on my patterning strip.
It’s activities like these that remind me that “success” is not the goal, progress is the goal. And, really, if Noah is successful at progress, he’s pretty darn successful, isn’t he?