Kindergarten Activities - Geometry & Spatial Sense
Looking for geometry kindergarten activities?
The following preschool and kindergarten activities help children develop their understanding of objects and shapes in their environment and help them recognize and describe attributes of shapes.
The activities are easy to integrate into daily routines. As well as the suggestions below, read books that talk about shapes to your students and provide puzzles and posters with clearly illustrated shape pictures. Integrate geometry into your learning centers. I have placed posters illustrating shapes in my dramatic play center and observed children tracing the shapes with their fingers, copying the shapes at the play table and asking each other what a certain shape was called.
What geometry and spatial skills should I teach?
Once again, depending on where you live, learning outcomes regarding geometry and spatial sense kindergarten activities vary. Students are working towards:
- sorting a given set of familiar 3-D objects using a single attribute, such as size or shape, and explaining their sorting rule
- stating the difference between two given pre-sorted sets by telling the sorting rule used to sort them
- building and describing 3-D objects
- creating a representation of a given 3-D object using materials, such as modeling clay and building blocks
- comparing their representation to the original 3-D object
- describing 3-D objects using words such as big, little, round, like a box, and like an ice cream cone
Not sure what geometry vocabulary to teach? Read more...
Why give children sorting activities?
Sorting and describing 3-D objects helps students learn how to group objects. Students usually learn to first sort objects with one different attribute and then add more.
Show me all the red objects,
Show me the red triangles
Show me the large, red, triangles
Show me the thick, large, red triangles.
Visit more shape and space kindergarten activities on the following pages:
Attribute block - preschool and kindergarten activities
Roll, slide, or both?
This kindergarten activity helps students notice similarities in objects that slide and objects that roll and is a good opportunity to use math vocabulary.
Tub of geometric solids
Ramp made of blocks and mat board. Build the ramp with a long piece of mat board and blocks taped together (see a similar ramp here)
2 Hoola Hoops
Word cards - Slide, roll, slide and roll
- Work with small groups of about ten students.
- Give each child a 3D shape.
- Have each child take a turn to see if their object slides or rolls down the ramp or does both.Let them try a few times.
- Put two Hoola Hoops on the carpet that are intersected like a Venn diagram.
- Students place objects that roll on one side, objects that slide on the other and objects that do both in the middle.
- Count how many objects in each category and record the number on a paper.
- Talk about which side has fewer and which side has more. Ask children why some did not roll or did not slide
Kindergarten activities with geoboards
Geoboards are an excellent hands-on manipulative tool for discovering the concepts of shapes, angles, measurement, area, and perimeter. Be sure to give the children time to play with the geoboards and elastics before trying to use them for a formal lesson.
1. Making shapes
Give each child a geoboard and a large elastic band and a picture of a square and have the students try and make one on with their elastic and geoboard.
Don't assume that this is easy for all students, some need you to guide their hands to begin with. Do this activity with various shapes and teach vocabulary, such as triangle, square, rectangle, corners and sides as the children form the shapes.
2. Copying pictures
Give children dotted paper (same number of dots as geoboard) with shapes drawn on them. With this kindergarten activity the students try and reproduce the pictures.
More geometry & spatial sense kindergarten activities
- Copy 3D shapes - Give students materials such as blocks or modeling clay and have them recreate an object, such as a tissue box.
- Cover designs with pattern blocks
- Left & right games and activities - Hokey Pokey
2D geometric shapes - Recognize, name, draw, compare, and sort shapes.
- Have sets of cut out laminated shapes in various colors and sizes.
- Use them in small groups and ask students to choose a small blue square, then have another choose a large red square.
- Have the students take turns asking a partner to choose certain shapes so they will have practice using geometric vocabulary.
- Let students trace the shapes to make pictures.