See It, Build It, Check It

Primary (Age 6 – 9)

Curriculum Goal

Primary: Geometry and Spatial Sense

  • Compose and decompose various structures, and identify the two-dimensional shapes and three-dimensional objects that these structures contain.


  • Students and teacher will be sitting on the carpet in a circle.


In-Person Version:

  • 2D shape outlines (Appendix A)
  • Pattern blocks for each student

Online Version:


  • Show students an example of a 2D shape outline (Appendix A) and show the solution of the outline filled with shapes. Explain that this will be the task they will be doing.
  • Present students with the outline of a 2D shape (Appendix A) and have them construct the shape using pattern blocks.
    • For the online version, present students with the outline of a 2D shape (Appendix A) and have them construct the shape using pattern blocks google slides (Appendix B)
  • For the next challenge, quickly present the outline and then hide it from view.
  • Have students construct the shape from memory. Students may require another opportunity to view the shape. Feel free to show the outline again to help them with the challenge.
  • Give students time to share their results with a partner, in a small group or with the whole class.
  • Facilitate a discussion around memory strategies (e.g., noticing symmetry, grouping, repetition, thinking about the number of shapes used) and the different ways of composing the same 2D shape.
  • Ask students to compare how they constructed their 2D shape and talk about the strategies they used when building it from memory.
  • Proceed to the next slide in Appendix A to present the students with a new 2D shape challenge.


  • Show students a filled in pattern block shape. Hide the shape and have them draw the outline from memory (see Appendix A for an example).

Look Fors

  • Are students able to visualize the arrangement before placing the pieces? Ask the student what they are visualizing.
  • What kind of language is being used to describe what students are visualizing? Listen for words related to location, distance, orientation and direction (e.g., left, right, up, down, angle, turn).

Related Lessons

Students recreate the missing half of an image using horizontal or vertical lines of symmetry.

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