Number Patterns

The Number Patterns lesson plan introduces students to math rules. It teaches students how to find patterns from these rules. They will learn how to use the order of operations as well. They will be able to determine the output of a particular rule based on the input. Additionally, they will work with partners to find patterns using the rules they create.

This lesson focuses on the concept of numerical patterns. The material progresses in difficulty throughout the lesson. They should be able to solve expressions using the order of operations. They will use both X and Y values to determine what rule is being used. By the end, students should be able to both identify patterns and generate numerical rules.

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Number Patterns is a 5th Grade mathematics lesson. It teaches students how to generate patterns using a given rule. Teachers will begin the lesson by asking students where they’ve seen patterns. This can be in general, not necessarily in math. Then the teacher will ask about math patterns specifically, such as skip counting.

Two instructional content pages will precede the activity. They describe the difference between math patterns with properties and those that just follow a rule. For example, “any number times zero equals zero” is a mathematical property. On the other hand, “add eight” is simply a rule. The lesson continues by describing simple and complicated rules. It introduces the idea of the order of operations.

Through an activity, practice, and homework assignment, students will be able to demonstrate their knowledge. They will be able to identify and create patterns and explain both how they work and why. Each worksheet is unique to ensure students can demonstrate their knowledge in different ways.

Additionally, the lesson plan provides teachers with extra suggestions to use, found in the “Options for Lesson” section. One specifically suggest teachers give different parameters to students based on skill level. This provides a way to differentiate within the class and give extra help to the students who need it.

What Number Patterns includes

Number Patterns contains a few materials that will aid teachers in illustrating number patterns. The practice worksheet will prepare the students for their homework.


The activity worksheet will require students to work with a partner. Each student will write their own number pattern (rule) on an index card. They will write out the first few numbers for their partner. After switching cards, the students will try to guess each other’s patterns. Then they will fill in the blanks once they know the rule.

At the end, students will answer questions about the patterns they looked at. Some will ask about the pattern of a single rule. Others will ask to compare the patterns of the two sets of numbers to each other.


The practice sheet provides several function tables. The students will have to determine the patterns based on the numbers in the table. The tables present both X and Y (input and output) values with which students can learn the rules. The tables get progressively more difficult to test students’ comprehension.


The homework sheet requires students to analyze a table with two different rules. They will answer questions about each rule and compare them to each other. Afterward, they will have to create a pattern based on a given rule. Finally, they will describe how they came up with their new patterns.

Additional information


5th Grade



State Educational Standards


Lessons are aligned to meet the education objectives and goals of most states. For more information on your state objectives, contact your local Board of Education or Department of Education in your state.