Fractals Lesson Plan for Elementary School

Instructor: Sharon Linde

Sharon has a Masters of Science in Mathematics

Teach students about fractals with this fun and engaging lesson plan. Students will read a text lesson that explains key ideas, then get busy applying understanding to a game and project. Take a quiz to test understanding.

Learning Objectives

After this lesson, students will be able to:

  • Define 'fractal.'
  • Find and identify fractals in nature.
  • Create an original fractal.


1 - 1.5 hours

Curriculum Standards


Determine the meaning of general academic and domain-specific words and phrases in a text relevant to a grade 3 topic or subject area.


Describe the relationship between a series of historical events, scientific ideas or concepts, or steps in technical procedures in a text, using language that pertains to time, sequence, and cause/effect.


Partition shapes into parts with equal areas. Express the area of each part as a unit fraction of the whole.


  • Copies of the lesson Fractals Lesson for Kids, one for each student
  • Mirrors
  • Paper
  • Colored pencils
  • Rulers
  • Images of fractals to share

Warm-Up and Preparation

  • Divide students into small groups and give each group a few mirrors.
  • Invite students to take turns looking into one mirror at a time, then guide them to look at one mirror with another mirror, taking turns to do so, then discussing what they see.
  • Give students plenty of time to explore using multiple mirrors in this way, then discuss:
    • What do you notice when you use one mirror to look into another?
    • How do images change when you use multiple mirrors?

Direct Instruction

  • Distribute the lesson Fractals Lesson for Kids and read the sections 'Mirrors' and 'Fractals' together.
  • Define 'fractals' and allow students to recreate the effect in the image found in the lesson with their group.
  • Look closely at the image of the Sierpinksi Triangle with students, and ask them to explain what they see to a partner, then share as a whole group. Can students identify the fractals?
  • Now read the section 'Sierpinksi Triangle' together for an explanation.
  • Read 'Fractals Found in Nature' together, and work with students to identify coordinating images.
  • Give each student a piece of paper and colored pencils, then read 'Draw Your Own Fractal' together, stepping through the process with students as they make their own fractal.
  • Have students share their fractals with their small groups. What is the same? What is different? Why are these fractals?
  • Finally, read the 'Lesson Summary,' and have students take the quiz.

To unlock this lesson you must be a Member.
Create your account

Register to view this lesson

Are you a student or a teacher?

Unlock Your Education

See for yourself why 30 million people use

Become a member and start learning now.
Become a Member  Back
What teachers are saying about
Try it risk-free for 30 days

Earning College Credit

Did you know… We have over 200 college courses that prepare you to earn credit by exam that is accepted by over 1,500 colleges and universities. You can test out of the first two years of college and save thousands off your degree. Anyone can earn credit-by-exam regardless of age or education level.

To learn more, visit our Earning Credit Page

Transferring credit to the school of your choice

Not sure what college you want to attend yet? has thousands of articles about every imaginable degree, area of study and career path that can help you find the school that's right for you.

Create an account to start this course today
Try it risk-free for 30 days!
Create an account