• Topics covered in Unit 1: 


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    1. I can order objects by one or more attributes.

    2. I can sort and classify objects by one or more attributes.

    3. I can create and extend simple patterns.

    •  Four-year-olds are able to put objects in order using one characteristic or attribute such as tallest to shortest or lightest to darkest. Asking children to explain how they decided to put them in a particular order shows their understanding of the concept.  


      1. lines up cars on rug from slowest to fastest and says, "The blue car is the fastest and the red car is the slowest."

      2. paints stripes on paper and says, "Look, these are light and they get darker and darker."

      3. plays xylophone and says, "Listen! This one is quiet and then they get louder."

      4. orders colored pencils in art center by length and says, "The yellow one is the longest!"

    • Sorting is a beginning math skill that introduces the concept of placing like items into sets according to attributes — shape, color or size, for example. Classification means being able to name the sets you have created — “These are all red, heart-shaped buttons.” Sorting and classifying objects not only teaches children about attributes and relationships, but also promotes thinking logically and applying rules. It provides a model for organizing things in the real world, such as putting toys away or sorting laundry for washing.  


      1. sorts vehicles

      2. sorts attribute buttons by color, then resorts them by shape or number of holes

      3. sorts animals by the sounds they make - loud or soft

      4. sorts animals and classifies "These are scary. These are nice."

    • The ability to recognize, compare and manipulate patterns is the basis for understanding much of mathematics. Patterns include the linear a-b-a-b patterns that we generally think of first, as well as non-linear patterns such as growing patterns. Four-year-olds begin to understand patterns first by copying a teacher’s pattern, then extending it. The final step is creating patterns on their own. 


      1. reproduces simple patterns using counting bears

      2. independently creates patterns - circle, square, circle, square

      3. points to pegs on a peg board and says it is a pattern

      4. creates pattern using fruit on skewer