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12 — Patterns in letters, words and sentences

Sequence focus points

A paintbrush with paint on it and a stick with paint, both on a black plastic plate

Above: Brushes and palette, photo by Jennifer Asha


Gather a collection of manufactured and natural objects that could be used to create patterns, such as paint brushes, crayons, paddle-pop sticks, sticks, leaves and flowers. Prior to the lesson use some of the items to create patterns on separate cards. Display the objects and the patterns to the class and ask students to attempt to match the objects to the pattern they have made.

Modelled viewing: Predicting and viewing a multimodal text

Visit the Creative Cowboy films website and predict what the clip about Indigenous artist Angelina Pwerle, an Anmatyerr woman from Utopia in the Northern Territory, will be about. Note that this video, as of 2015, is no longer open content: you will need to subscribe to the site, or choose the (modest) pay per view option. Draw the students’ attention to the Indigenous art displayed in the room and the observations and discussions conducted in previous sequences in order to highlight the different patterns observed. Predict the types of patterns that will be seen in the clip. Explain that the clip shows how Angelina makes the patterns in her artwork. View the short film clip on Angelina Pwerle to see how she uses patterns to make her art that is at once traditional and modern.  ACELY1650

Activity 1: Responding to literature

Allow the students to respond to the text viewed on a personal level. Encourage them to make connections between the clip and previous discussions, and the ways they like to create art. Ask them to recall events from the clip. ACELT1575,  ACELT1783,  ACELT1578

Activity 2: Modelled and jointly constructed writing

Model writing some sentences about Angelina Pwerle’s art making processes (for example, ‘There are many colours in Angelina’s painting’). Highlight the use of capital letters at the beginning of sentences and to begin the artist’s name and full stops at the end of sentences.

Jointly construct other sentences with the students (for example, ‘Angelina Pwerle dipped a stick in paint’, ‘Angelina sat on the ground’). Reinforce the correct letter formation of capital letters and have students join in by tracing the letters with their finger on the carpet or on their leg.  ACELA1432,  ACELA1435,  ACELA1440,  ACELY1651,  ACELY1653

Activity 3: Language focus – reading sentences

Re-write the sentences on coloured card or with coloured highlighters on the interactive whiteboard to signify the sentence level grammar and to show the words that tell ‘what is happening’ (in italics). For example:

Ask the students to re-read the sentences and point out the words that tell us ‘what is happening’. Have them act out or mime the action verb after it is located.  ACELA1435,  ACELA1434

Independent reading and writing

Photograph the students as they are miming the action verbs. Ask them to independently write a caption telling what they were doing in their photograph (for example, ‘I was painting’). Print out the photographs, jointly constructed sentences and independently written captions to create a class-made book to be read during independent reading time. Collect the independent writing samples to be analysed as part of formal assessment.  ACELY1650