During the holidays one of our wonderful teachers fround these gorgeous post cards depicting some funky guinea fowl.  As “Guinea Fowls” is the name of her class she bought one for each child this year so that they could be used for their math book covers.  I was tasked with finding a way to make it look good.  I was more concerned for them to learn something from the exercise.

They were allowed to place the postcard anywhich way (though rather not upside down) on the page as long as there was a small area along the top for their name label. 

We used black permanant markers to practice our pattern design radiating from the card. 

I find that often children do not know or even understand the difference between decoration and pattern.

For me to decorate is to have a design or a variety thereof sprinkled over an area whereas patterns follow eachother often touching (though not neccessarily) and are a repeated design.  Simply put the rules go something like “they have to follow and repeat”.  I also encourage patterns to touch the sides of whatever area they are in.  This often means puting half designs along the edges.  The patterns should not be squeezed in on the edge and not be left out with a gap left behind.  Both of the those just leave the art looking unfinished and untidy.