Teaching 2D Shapes in FDK

*If you want to see what I did for 2D Shapes in 2015 click here!*

Week 3 and 4 was all about 2D shapes in math!
I like starting with 2D shapes because it is something that most of the kids already know and feel successful about.

Here is the plan I made to keep me on track.
Click on the picture to download a copy!

We started by introducing the vocabulary 2D shapes, circle, triangle, square, rectangle, sides and vertices.
On the first day we did the first 2 columns of this anchor chart.

I made up and used this diagnostic checklist so that I knew how much the kids already knew about shapes.  Click on either picture to download the freebie!


On the second day we watched "The Very Greedy Triangle" by Marilyn Burns on YouTube.  Then we talked about and recorded where we see shapes around us in the examples column.

Here are all of the videos that we watched during our 8-day unit.

On the third day I introduced some more shapes with these mini shape posters by The First Grade Parade and then taped them on our cabinets so the students can use them as a resource.  

You can find them here.

The kids used them as a reference to spell the names of the shapes all week long!

Next we worked on comparing and sorting shapes.


And then did some problem solving questions to challenge my high achievers.

This one is Tanya's shape mentioned in Day 8.
Use a name of a student in your class where it is blurred!

This one was a tricky lesson but my high achievers liked the challenge!

We didn't end up doing the sorting quadrilaterals lesson this year (mentioned in Day 6) but what you do is gather shapes that are half quadrilaterals (have a variety like rhombus, trapezoid, square etc.) and not quadrilateral.  Get students to sit in a circle and pass out a shape to each student.  Put the hoola hoop in the middle.  Tell students you are going to make up a sorting rule in your head and they need to guess the sorting rule at the end.

Then ask students one by one to put their shape outside or inside the hoola hoop.  The first few will just have to guess where their shape goes.  If they get it right I say "That matches my sorting rule, you can keep your shape there".  If it doesn't I say "Sorry, that doesn't match my sorting rule, please move your shape inside/outside the hoola hoop".

At the end students guess the sorting rule.  If you have a big class you can get them to guess half way and then make up a new sorting rule for the rest so the ones who have figured the rule out early won't be sitting there bored ;)

We displayed our learning on our bulletin board/wall in the hallway.

Here are the learning goals and success criterias I posted with our work:

And some close-ups of the "shape pictures" that I put up under "show".

My ECE sat with the students and coached them on how to draw the shapes and label their pictures.  She had the shape manipulatives out so they could copy the shapes they wanted.  They turned out so cute and I was surprised how well they could draw already!

This activity was open during centre time.  The students searched in calendars to find real life shapes, cut them out and glued them on to the corresponding giant shapes made from construction paper.

Here are just some of the centres that were open during our 2D shape unit:

Sorting tangrams by shape.

You can find these mats by clicking here or on the picture below.

Making shapes on geoboards.
The example pages are from "Geoboard It! A Fun Math and Geometry Station" by First Grade Blue Skies.

At "Shake a Shape" there are shapes hot glued on to the inside of the egg carton.  A pom pom is placed inside and the student shakes the carton, open it up and traces the shape the pom pom landed on.
This activity can be found in "Backpack Boogie" by Growing Kinders.

My kids LOVE playdough! These shape mats are a freebie from Miss Kindergarten.

On a different day my ECE put out tangrams and asked them to find out how many tangram squares fit in a square, how many tangram triangles fit in the triangle etc.

We also used these shape puzzles...

and I finally got some insertable dice so we played this game called "Schoolhouse Shapes" from "The Bus Stops Here" pack by The First Grade Parade.  The students roll the dice and cover the shape they roll.  The first person to cover their whole mat is the winner!

I also put these two games on the SMARTBoard for the kids to play.

You can find them both at abcya.com.  Click on K then scroll down to "more".

If you made it this far, thank you for reading!
I wish I could share all of the wonderful centres my ECE thought of and put out but I didn't get a chance to take pictures of everything.  I hope that you find something useful that you can implement in your own classroom in this post!

What is your favourite activity/centre for 2D shapes?
Please leave me a comment and let me know!
I am always looking for new ideas!


  1. Thank you! So nice to see a blog like this from an Ontario kindergarten teacher!

  2. What is great respecting is dealing with instead of depending on. converting drawings

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