Geometry Lesson Ideas

                  • Have a shape day. Choose a day each week to learn about a new shape. Display items that are this shape throughout the classroom. 
                  • Take a shape walk through the school and neighbourhood. Find as many shapes as you can. When you get back to class draw them on a simple chart. Write the name of each shape underneath it.
                  • Eat shaped snacks. For circles think orange slices, banana slices, crackers. For squares think cheese, crackers, toast. For triangles how about pizza, crackers, cheese, wedges of apples, oranges, etc.
                  • Play with toothpick puzzles. Can you make a shape with toothpicks? Can you copy this shape with toothpicks?
                  • Puzzling Shapes :Create a puzzle of shapes out of cardboard with a cutting tool. Have your child put the pieces back together.
  • Trace Some Shapes: Draw some shapes on paper with a pencil. Invite your child to trace over them with a colorful marker.
  • Follow-The-Leader Shape Copier: Play follow-the-leader by drawing shapes and have your child copy it. Then allow your child to lead by drawing a shape that you copy. Use a white board or chalkboard.
  • Drawing Shape Pictures: Make some shape cards out of index cards. Put them in a box and take turns choosing a shape from the box. Draw or trace the shape you selected onto a piece of paper.
    • For an advanced version, pick two or three cards and make a picture using those shapes. For example, the cards picked are a square, a triangle and a circle. A square house with a triangle roof can be made - and a circular sun can be put up in the sky. Have fun trying new things.
  • Use pipe cleaners to make different shapes.
    • Use yarn to make shapes and glue them onto paper.
    • Make shapes out of play dough.
    • Make pictures using different shapes.
    • Put different shape blocks in a bag and have the student reach in and grab one. Without looking can they guess what the shapes is?
    • Make a circle collage. Now how about a square or triangle collage.
    • Draw shapes on the pavement with sidewalk chalk.
      • Cut shapes out of sponges and let the kids make sponge art pictures.
      • Cut sponges into different shapes. Place tempera paint in pie tins. You may want to clip string type clothes pins onto the sponge shapes. Give children a sheet of construction paper for them to make prints onto.
      • Cut shapes from construction paper or oaktag. Have a variety of materials of various textures (sandpaper, corduroy, styrofoam, velvet, yarn, cotton balls, felt)
      • Have the children glue a variety of textures onto the construction paper shapes to create Feely Shapes. If you use large shapes from construction paper hang low on the walls for the children to explore on their own.

      • When learning shapes begin with the circle. Cut circles out of construction paper. Give each child a shape. Take a walk around your room. When you find an item in the room that is a circle, tape the construction paper one on it. How many circles can you find? Repeat at another time with different shapes.
      • Place a shape from each pair on a table. Give each child a paper cut in a shape. Have the child go to the table and find its mate. Children then can draw on their shape papers.
      • Give each child a cutout of a circle, a square, and a triangle. Show examples of how a circle can become a wheel or how a triangle can become a tree. Ask children to use their imaginations and create pictures by combining a variety of shapes.
      • Provide the children with squares, rectangles and triangles cut from such materials as construction paper, and wallpaper. Let the children use scissors to cut off all the corners. Have them glue their shapes and corners on sheets of construction paper.
      • Shape Mobiles: Cut yarn into strings. Knot one end of each piece of string and tape the other to make a needle. Children can punch holes in the shapes and string them for hanging. Children may wish to use the cardboard cutouts to trace more shapes.

      Ricky Rectangle

      Ricky Rectangle is my name.
      My four sides are not the same.
      2 are short and 2 are long.
      Count my sides, come right along.
      1, 2, 3, 4.

      • Place paint in a shallow container. Have children dip the sponges into  the paint and press onto their construction paper to create a rectangle shapes mural.
      • Cut rectangles from many different types of paper; construction, gift wrap... Give each child a sheet of construction paper. Place the pre-cut rectangles on the table with glue. The children pick out and glue onto thier paper the rectangles to create a rectangle collage.
      Sammy Square

      Sammy Square is my name.
      My four sides are just the same.
      Turn me around, I don't care.
      I'm always the same.
      I'm Sammy Square.

      Friendly Shapes Two

      Make a circle, make a circle, (draw in the air)
      Draw it in the sky
      Use your finger, use your finger,
      Make it round as a pie

      Draw a square, draw a square,
      Make the lines so straight.
      Make a square, make a square,
      Draw a box in the air.

      • Negative Art: Cut a square out of the center of the construction paper, mounted it a different piece of construction paper and they colored in the square.
      •  Collections: For my triangle I cut a larger triangle out of butcher paper and then drew things that were triangles in the hole.
      • Lacing: Cut out a square, punch holes along the side, take some yarn enough to thread thru your square, put tape at both ends of the yarn and thread thru holes on the square. You can do this with all the shapes.
      • Nesting: Give the children a large square sheet of paper, a smaller one, and smaller one, a smaller one, and smaller one and so on. Have the children glue them on top of each other by size. (hope that makes sense).
      • Collage: Cut a bunch of square from construction paper (or even better. . . let the kids), have them glue the squares onto a square sheet of paper and make a square collage.
      • Shape Pictures: Give them a bunch of different sized squares and have them make a picture of anything they want with them.
      • Shape Painting: Give them a large sheet of square shaped paper and let them choose their favorite color paint. Encourage them to paint the whole square. While still wet, sprinkle with glitter.
      • Stencils: Make square stencils (use tagboard)
      • Picture Frames: Make square picture frames using popsicle sticks
      • Shape Placemats: Have the children cut out the different shape you are using like you said you were using circles and ovals. (or you cut them out) Have the children glue the circles on to one side of construction paper and ovals on the other side, then laminate. Then when you eat ask the children to find the ....... shape to eat on. Remember you can use clear contact paper instead of laminating. And if you need it to be stronger use light cardboard.
      • Art Shapes: Cut out different shapes like your circle out of tissue paper and brush glue onto wax paper and glue the shapes to it.
      • Shape Collage: Materials: Construction Paper and magazines Draw large shapes on construction paper. Have the children fill in the shapes using pictures cut from magazines. Fill a circle with circular shapes etc.
      • Rolling Designs:  Give the children pieces of yarn or string to dip into bowls of glue. Have them wrap the glue-covered yarn around short cardboard tubes any way they wish. Allow the glue to dry. Make paint pads by placing folded paper towels in shallow containers and pouring on small amounts of tempera paint. Let the children roll their tubes across the paint pads, then all over pieces of construction paper.
      • Gumball Circles:  For each child, cut a gumball machine shape out of oaktag along with a number of small paper circles to use as gum balls. Have the children color their gum ball machine shapes with crayons. Let them choose the circles they want for the gum balls and glue them on their shapes. Hint: If you are working on a particular color make all the circles that color. Or use stickers.
      • White on Black Bold:  Put soap flake and paint in squeeze bottle. Squeeze out interesting white lines of different shapes on black paper. Arrange them in a bold pattern.
      • Glue Dots:  Use food coloring to tint two or three small containers of glue. Provide toothpicks for each color of glue. Children use toothpicks to dot glue on art paper in a free-form pattern, varying the colors they use.
      •   Fruit Loop Necklace - (circles): Give each child a long piece of yarn with tape on one end. Let them string fruit loops onto the yarn. Ask them to also name the colors as they string. When done tie the two ends together and let them wear. Just make sure to take off before nap time.
      • Paper Chains - (rectangle and circles): Give each child several paper strips (rectangles) to decorate. When done tape the ends together to form a "circle". It's fun to add everyone’s together and see how long you can make it.
      • Kites (diamond, rectangle) : Give each child a "diamond" shape. Let them glue on tissue paper or scraps of paper, add a long "rectangle" tail to the end. Hang in classroom.
      • Delightful Kites (trapazoid): Materials: 9 in. X 12 in. Art Paper, scraps of art paper in assorted colours, scissors and paste, pencil and eraser, ruler, crepe paper strips Procedure: Fold and cut out kite shape. Use various colours of paper scraps to create spring kite designs. (flowers, butterflies, birds) Use crepe paper for tails.
      • Twinkle Star (star): Give each child a star cut from paper. Let them paint it yellow. Before it dries, sprinkle glitter on the star.
      • Traffic Light (rectangle, circles): Give each child a black rectangle, make it rather large. Let child glue on a red circle, under that a yellow circle, under that a green circle. Discuss the colors and what they mean as you give them to the child. Add a smaller black rectangle to the bottom, will look like a pole.
      • Triangle Art (triangle): Give each child a large triangle shape. Now give them lots of smaller triangles and let them glue them onto the large triangle.
      • Build a House (square, rectangle, triangle): Give each child a large square (this is the house) and let them glue it onto a piece of white or blue paper. Now give them a triangle, this is the roof of the house. Now glue on two squares as windows. Glue a rectangle on as the door. A small circle as the door knob. Children can now decorate the background to add a sun (circle).
      •  Shape Book (all shapes ): Give each child a piece of paper with the name of a shape written on the bottom. Now give the child several shapes and let them glue the right one onto the right paper. When done and all the shapes are glued on the right pages, give them another paper but on it write "My Shape Book". They can decorate this cover if they want. Now staple all the pages and cover together. Kids can take this home and read their Shape Book to their parents. I also do this with Colors.
      •  Shape People: Make a circle out of red construction paper (I combine colors with shapes here), make white ovals for eyes with black circles inside, make short rectangles for arms and long rectangles for legs, hearts for hands and triangles for feet, all in different colors. I do the same with triangles, squares and rectangles. I cut all the shapes out but I let the children glue them together. Gluing is another teaching experience. We hang them in the room for the rest of the week and they take them home the following week.
      •  Clown Face: Cut out a large circle for each child. Cut out several small circles, triangles, rectangles and diamonds from various colours of construction paper. Let the children paste them to the white paper to make a clown face.
      •  Point a Path: Purpose: To provide meaningful experience with geometric shapes. Provide a muffin tin containing several colors of mixed finger paints for each table or small group of 4-6 children. Supply a large piece of paper for each child. Direct children to make various geometric shapes by dipping one finger in the paint and making a "fingerprint path" to show that shape. Examples: " Make a fingerprint path that shows a blue circle." " Make a fingerprint path shows a triangle."
      • Shapes Caterpillar: Cut out a head for the caterpillar. Cut out shapes for children to add as the segments to the body.
      •  Spray Painting: Cut out shapes after you draw them onto paper. Then place them on white paper and spray tempura paint over them. Kids get to see shapes on paper and the ones they cutout.
      •  Shapes Box: Cut out shapes, put in box. Let children choose shapes to create their own creation to glue on paper.
      •  Rectangle Robots: Pre-cut several rectangle shapes: larger rectangle for body, smaller for head. For arms, legs, hands and feet cut paper strips with my paper cutter, in various sizes. Try wrapping paper or paper with other textures too. The kids put their rectangles on their paper first, then when they are pleased with their arrangement they paste them on the paper. Add facial features with crayon or marker and "antennas" with coiled pipe cleaners.
      •  Carbon Drawing: Attach a sheet of paper that had shapes on it to a blank sheet of paper with a sheet of carbon in between. The children traced the shapes and were amazed to see it appear on the bottom sheet - though they couldn't work out why it was blue and not the color of the pencil they were using!
      Shape Art: Use a shape as the beginning of a picture:

      a circle can be turned into a face
      a square can be turned into a house
      a triangle can be turned into a tee-pee
      a rectangle can be turned into a high rise
      an oval can be turned into a balloon
      a diamond can be turned into a kite
      a heart can be part of the body

      • Shape Hopping: Tape a bunch of squares to the floor and have a hopping game or play musical squares.
      •  Shapes on Chairs: Tape the different shapes you are learning to the back of your chairs. Then when you use the chairs ask a child to sit on a circle shape and so on.
      •  Circle Time: During circle time you could put shapes on the floor where you want the children to sit, or you could go to your carpet store and ask for samples of carpet and tape or paint the shapes on their. Then ask one child at a time to find the ...... shape.
      • Shape Table: Have a special table and whenever the kids find something square they can put it there!
      • Big Book of Shapes: Take construction paper and cut them like all the shapes then we cut 3 smaller ones of each shape and laminated them. Take the large shapes and punched holes and put them in a book style just how they are, then using small pieces of velcro and put the smaller shapes on the bigger shapes. This makes a great matching game.
      •  Sensory Shapes: Cut different shapes out of different feeling things (sandpaper, wallpaper, carpet, different textures of fabric, etc.) then glue them to a big piece of cardboard, and ask the children to feel the different shapes.
      • Game with Shapes: We cut big shapes out of construction paper (this is great for colors too) hide them around the room. You could either ask the children to find a circle shape or blue color only, or when they find a shape they need to tell you what it is.
      •  Shape Sorting Game: Get a some small boxes, bags or whatever and have shapes or whatever your teaching on cards and put the same shapes on boxes like put circle on one box and oval on another box, put the cards in one of the boxes(kleenex boxes work great). The children need to pull one shape out of the box, tell you what it is and put the card in the box it matches.
      • Apple Sailboat Snack: The children make apple sailboats from an apple slice, a triangular piece of cheese, and a toothpick. Eat for snack.
      •  Shape Snack: Cut sandwiches into triangles, use square crackers or graham cracker squares with peanut butter, round crackers with cheese and rectangular wafer cookies. Encourage the children to tell us what shape they are eating and we also brainstorm other shaped foods (pizza, cake, cucumber/carrot slices, etc.

      Smarties Math Ideas
      • Make each colour into different geometric shapes.
      • Make as many shapes as possible.
      • How many smarties to cover different shapes drawn on graph paper?
      • Use the box to discuss edges, faces, vertices, sides, corners.
      • If given 6 smarties, can you make a shape?
      • How many different shapes can you find on the smarties box?
      • Make different sizes of circles with smarties. Use string to measure the circumference. Compare radius, diameter, and circumference.
                 Geometry Resources

      Jessi Lalonde,
      Aug 6, 2010, 6:05 AM