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    Common Maths Shapes and the Benefits of Teaching Shapes to Small Children


    Common Maths Shapes and the Benefits of Teaching Shapes to Small Children

    Updated on 14 May 2024

    Shapes are crucial in shaping young minds. Preschoolers and toddlers are exposed to different shapes to strengthen their fine motor skills. Moreover, shapes are an important medium to develop skills like sorting, classifying, vocabulary building, and spatial relations. Shapes allow the tiny tots to make visual discrimination between objects and lays a foundation for future learning.

    In this article, we will discuss everything from simple shapes to more complex ones like pentagon shape, hexagon shape, and rhombus shape. In addition, this piece will also equip you with different ways to make your child learn the names of different shapes. So, let’s get started!

    Names of different shapes for kids

    One of the most interesting ways to draw your child’s attention to shapes of objects is by asking them about shapes of things of everyday use. For instance, a square dish plate, or a rectangle TV screen. This simple activity will make them more observant about their surroundings. Let’s move on to names of different shapes:

    1. Triangle

    A triangle is a shape with three corners that are joined by three straight lines. It is one of the simplest shapes, and your child will come across it in many ways like a triangular parantha or how about a pizza slice?

    1. Square

    A square is a boxlike shape with four sides at four right angles. Any shape with four sides is regarded as a quadrilateral. Now let’s think of some square objects around us. Some simple examples are a handkerchief, cushions, and voila, even bread slices are square!

    1. Rectangle

    A rectangle is also a quadrilateral with four sides but the difference between a square and a rectangle is that a square has equal sides whereas in a rectangle, opposite sides are equal. For example, bricks and pencil boxes.

    1. Trapezoid

    A trapezoid shape is a convex quadrilateral in which there are no parallel sides meaning that its pair of opposite sides are unequal in length. For instance, have you noticed a popcorn box, it’s a trapezoid!

    1. Rhombus

    A rhombus is a quadrilateral whose diagonals intersect at right angles and all the four sides are equal in length. For example, an earring.

    1. Pentagon

    A pentagon is a five-sided polygon. You can tell your child that penta means five and therefore, the shape is called a pentagon. For example, okra or lady finger. Isn’t it interesting?

    1. Hexagon

    Hexagon is a six-sided polygon. This side is very important in understanding advanced chemistry concepts.

    1. Heptagon

    A seven-sided side is known as a heptagon shape.

    1. Octagon

    An octagon shape compromises eight sides.

    1. Circle

    Circle is generally every kid’s favorite shape. A circle is a closed shape in which every point on the circle is at an equal distance from the center. A circle is easy to find in everyday items like bangles, chapati, or even a smiley!

    1. Diamond

    A diamond is basically a rectangle with four right angles and two sets of parallel sides that are equal in length. A diamond is the same as a rhombus. For example, colorful kites are diamond shaped. You can also find this shape in a pack of cards.

    1. Heart

    A heart is a special shape used to denote an individual’s heart and emotions. But you will be surprised to know that the actual human heart looks quite different. This shape is commonly used in the world of emojis to express love.

    1. Star shape

    A star shape is used to represent the light reflected from the stars in the night sky. For example, star fruit and star fish.

    1. Oval

    An oval is a somewhat elongated circle. It is basically a quadrilateral having one pair of congruent parallel sides. For example, cricket fields are oval-shaped.

    The world of shapes is diverse, but to begin with, you can make your child familiar with these basic shapes. Now let’s move on to understand why teaching shapes is beneficial for your child.

    Benefits of teaching shapes names to kids

    Your kid can understand some basic math concepts and colors by learning about different shapes. Let’s have a look at some of the benefits of introducing shapes while educating small children:

    • Enhanced verbal skills

    When your child learns about different shapes, then they also grab a distinct set of skills like verbal communication which is essential for expressing themselves better and they also learn the description of shapes that they see.

    • Pre-writing activity

    Learning about different shapes aids in providing a framework of early writing skills and reading.

    • An introduction to math concepts

    Shapes are an important aspect of learning math and getting to know about them early on introduces kids to future learning concepts.

    • Boost creative skills

    Learning to draw different shapes will help them draw simple pictures. This will invoke a sense of creativity and spark an interest in creative activities.

    • Enhances observation power

    Knowing about different shapes will make your child more observant. Whether the chapati on their dinner plate or the shape of your bangle, your kid will be fascinated with the world around them. They would be able to establish connections between objects and shapes in their vicinity.

    • Improves imagination

    The simple exercise of learning about shapes makes them more imaginative as slowly they will explore 3-dimensional shapes as well.

    How to teach names of shapes to small kids

    Kids grasp more quickly and easily if a new concept is set in motion through fun games or even stories. Let’s learn some exciting and fun ways to educate your child about different shapes:

    • Draw shapes

    You can take some flour or sawdust in a big plate, now make shapes with your fingers. Ask your child to repeat the same and in no time, you will observe your child making different shapes either with clay or playdough.

    • Use examples

    You can educate little children about shapes by emphasizing the shapes of everyday items such as a square cloth or a round table. This will help them relate the concept with its practical application and will stay in his/her memory for longer.

    • Play ‘guess who’ games

    There are different shapes’ flashcards available in the market. Play ‘guess who’ game with your child and ask about different shapes. This will help enhance their understanding of shapes and improve problem-solving skills.

    • Paint a picture

    Teach your child simple drawing which involves 2-3 shapes like that of a hut or a lamp. Try cutting out different shapes from colorful sheets and ask them to make something out of them. This fun filled activity will not only sharpen their brain but enhance creativity too. So, a complete win-win!

    Final Words

    Shapes are also regarded as geometric shapes formed with fixed lines or curves. Shapes help small children to identify different things around them from their toys to utensils. Teaching about shapes is an essential part of early learning as it enhances verbal skills, imagination powers and boosts observational skills. There are many fun activities in pre-schools aimed at introducing different shapes such as drawing shapes or painting a picture. Nurturing young kids with the knowledge of shapes lays the foundation of a brighter future with creativity and confidence.

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    Written by

    Madhavi Gupta

    Dr. Madhavi Gupta is an accomplished Ayurvedic doctor specializing in Medical content writing with an experience of over 10 years.

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