Finding geometric shapes outside

Curriculum

Geometry

From the Ontario Ministry of Education Kindergarten Curriculum

  • 20.3: compose pictures, designs, shapes, and patterns using 2D shapes, predict and explore reflective symmetry in 2D shapes and decompose 2D shapes into smaller shapes and rearrange the pieces into other shapes using various tools and materials (DLMB)
  • 20.4: build 3D structures using a variety of materials and identify the 3D figures their structure contains  (DLMB)
  • 20.5: investigate and describe how objects can be collected, grouped and organized according to similarities and differences  (DLMB, PSI)
  • 18.2: explore and extend patterns  (DLMB)

Context

  • Learning about geometric shapes is a normative moment in students’ educational trajectories.
  • Often, students identify items that remind them of the common geometric shapes, play with a variety of shapes, and count vertices, edges, and faces.
  • While outside, students will explore and find shapes and over several visits will take pictures of shapes and make shapes using sticks.

Materials

  • Sticks (whether manmade or natural) 
  • Geometric shapes (both 2 and 3-dimensional shapes)
  • Blocks 
  • Shape identification page 
  • String 
  • Scissors

Lesson

Introduction

  • Ask students to name shapes
  • Ask students if they can sort the shapes 
  • Encourage students to think of something that looks like this shape (prompt students to provide names of shapes) 

Lesson

  • Encourage students to use their shape identification page to walk through the classroom (or desired location) and find items that have the same shape. They will also take along the concrete shapes too.
  • On a subsequent visit, students will walk about in small groups taking pictures of things at their selected location that look like 2 or 3-dimensional shapes.
  • Students will help make shapes from sticks, ensure students decide and identify which shape it is. Then, guide students to think about how many sticks they would require to form that shape. Last, position the sticks like the shape, then tie it together.

Closure

  • Ask students to share their shapes
  • Encourage students to name their shape, how many sticks were required to form the shape, and probe the students to talk about features of their shape