Math Background

Lesson: Identifying Shapes and Matching Parts
Introducing the Concept

Talk about patterns that children see in the classroom and on their clothing. Remind children that a pattern has items that repeat according to rules. Try to have children identify any shapes in the patterns.

Materials: large circles, triangles, rectangles, and squares cut from construction paper (Learning Tools 20 and 21 in the Learning Tools Folder)

Prerequisite Skills and Concepts: Children should have an understanding of patterns. Place shapes on the floor in the following pattern:

circle, circle, square, circle, circle, square
  • Ask: How could I describe this pattern?
    Children may say that it is an AAB, AAB pattern or they may describe it by shape. Point to the circle.
  • Ask: What shape is this? How do you know?
    Children may say that it is a circle because it has curved lines or does not have straight sides or corners. Then point to the square.
  • Ask: How many straight sides of the same length does this shape have? How many corners? What is the name of this shape?
    Discuss children's answers.
  • Ask: How could we continue this pattern?
    Continue the pattern according to children's instructions. Then ask a volunteer to take a walk on the “shape walk,” saying the name of each shape as he or she steps on it.

    Have volunteers take a walk on the “shape walk” and say the name of each shape. You may wish to make new patterns and continue. Ask children to identify the patterns.

Houghton Mifflin Math Grade K