Unit 3 Flat Shapes All Around Us (Family Materials)

In this unit, students identify, describe, analyze, compare, and compose two-dimensional shapes.

Near the end of the unit, ask your student to go on a scavenger hunt to find shapes around the home or in places you visit often.

Questions that may be helpful as they work:

  • Can you find a square, a rectangle, a triangle, and a circle?

  • Find two shapes that are the same. What is the same about these shapes? What is different?

Section A Exploring Shapes in Our Environment

In this section, students look for shapes in the world around them and describe and compare them using their own language. Students begin by identifying objects in books and in their world that look like flat shapes. For example, students may look at a tissue box and say it looks like a rectangle. (The difference between flat and solid shapes will be investigated in a later unit.)

Students do not need to use formal vocabulary to describe or name shapes. However, they are asked to identify circles, squares, rectangles, and triangles. They are introduced to the idea that a square is a special kind of rectangle with all 4 sides the same length. Students see a wide range of examples of specific shapes, to help them develop an understanding of what the shapes are. For example, students see these shapes and talk about what makes them triangles.


Section B Making Shapes

In this section, students develop spatial reasoning as they make shapes out of pattern blocks.

Pattern block arrangement.
Pattern block arrangement.

Students find shapes that match exactly. Students work on shape puzzles that may require them to change the orientation of shapes to complete the puzzles. Students use their own language to describe how the shapes they are using and building are alike and different.