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Easter maths activities - repeating patterns on painted eggs

Wednesday, 9 March 2016
Decorating eggs for Easter is a tradition throughout Christian communities and can give an opportunity to bring together maths and art in your classroom. Using dots, lines and colours children can create bands of different repeating patterns.
You can either ask children to decorate real eggs or they can just use an egg template to design the patterns. If you use real eggs, use egg templates on paper for planning and practising patterns first. 

Give each child an egg template and ask them to design different repeating patterns.
The patterns can be repeating colours or repeating shapes or a repeating number.
You can limit the choice of colour to 2 or 3 depending on the food colouring you have. 

Ask the children to make...

different repeating patterns of dots using 2 colours.

 different repeating patterns of dots using 3 colours.

 different patterns using dots and lines using 2 colours.

different rows of patterns using: only lines, only dots, only  shapes, a mixture of lines and dots.

Give each child a hard boiled egg. 
Ask them to choose their favourite pattern and draw it carefully on their egg.

egg repeating patterns
You will need:
• Cake decorating paints  (minimum of 2 different colours).
• 1 hard boiled egg per child  (a few spares can be useful).
• Egg templates for planning/practising patterns.

If you use normal paints and crayons from the art cupboard make sure the children know they must not eat the eggs (this is especially important if they are taking the eggs home). Egg shells are absorbent and paint will enter the egg.

You can dip the eggs in natural dyes made from the water from cooking spinach, beetroot, red cabbage, tumeric or using a cup of cold black tea.
Teaching tip – if you want children to eat the eggs
• Only use food colouring paints and edible dyes.

• Do not use eggs if the shell cracked in cooking. To prevent shells cracking insert in cool water and heat gradually and cook at a gentle boil – not a vigorous boil.

• After boiling the eggs cool them quickly with cold water and put immediately in the fridge. 

• Eggs cannot be eaten if they have been out of a fridge for more than 2 hours. 


Other Easter Maths Activities

Easter Egg Tangram
How many different shapes can you make?
How many different birds can you make?
Can you put the egg together again?

Easter Egg Rolling
Opportunities for measuring length and collecting and sorting data.

Other webpages:

Easter DIY ideas
 brings together a number of different ways to decorate eggs.
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