Most of the books recommended here highlight recognition of geometric shapes. All of them have a cross-curricular connection with social studies, science or art. One of the web activities for students focuses on identifying polygons. The rest promote visualization and spatial relationship abilities.
Books with a Geometry Theme
In A Triangle for Adaora, by Ifeoma Onyefulu, a boy promises to find his young cousin a triangle. In their search, they come across many shapes, including oval-shaped cowrie shells, crescent-shaped plantains, and a square colander made of woven coconut palms. Illustrated with the author’s photographs, this book provides a wonderful tour of everyday life in a small African village. Great math-social studies connection. Locate.
A greedy, materialistic king covets the beautiful quilts that a generous quiltmaker only gives to the needy in this fable by author Jeff Brumbeau. Will the king find happiness once he finally owns one of the special quilts? The Quiltmaker’s Gift is densely illustrated with Gail de Marcken’s bright, detailed watercolors. I look forward to incorporating this book and my great-grandmother’s quilts into a lesson on geometric shapes. Locate.
Nature-loving children will enjoy Icky Bug Shapes by Jerry Pallotta. Each shape is introduced by industrious leafcutter ants and illustrated by various insects. There are plenty of insect facts for the science-lover. The realistic drawings by Shennen Bersani make these bugs interesting and not icky at all. Locate.
This book had me dreaming about sending my future students on a shape scavenger hunt around our local art museum. The Metropolitan Museum of Art’s Museum Shapes spotlights geometric shapes found in the museum’s collections. While a field trip may not be possible for my students, I can imagine setting up our own art-shape scavenger hunt closer to the classroom. Locate.
Mummy Math by Cindy Neuschwander takes Bibi and brother Matt on an adventure through an Egyptian pyramid. When they get lost, they follow clues based on geometric solids to reach their goal. Illustrations by Bryan Langdo. Locate.
Websites with Geometry Activities for Kids
1. Can you visualize the shape you get from two partially overlapping shapes? Check your answers interactively.
2. Create polygons on an interactive Geoboard.
3. Explore polygons interactively at Polygon Playground.
5. Make your own tangrams interactively.
Additional Resources for Teachers
1. How to use manipulatives like geoboards, tangrams, and pattern blocks when teaching geometry to upper elementary students.
3. Students practice identifying geometric shapes and then go on a real world Geometry Scavenger Hunt.