We’ve been playing a lot of geometry games around here! To reinforce difference between rectangles and squares, 2 very similar shapes, we decided to go BIG with the shapes!
The only supply you need for this is sidewalk chalk, and a big stretch of pavement to draw on!
Use their bodies to make the shapes.
Making Rectangles: I have 2 little guys, so we made rectangles by having each of then lie down on the driveway perpendicular to each other, and I traced a straight line the length of each of their bodies. Then they moved and lay down to fill the in the rest of the rectangle.
Making Squares: I drew straight lines in chalk using 1 child’s body for all 4 sides.
You could also do this for other shapes, to explore triangles or other polygons. My 5 year old also took a turn drawing a square using 4 (relatively) straight lines the length of his little brother’s body.
(I used both of my kids for this, but if you have an odd number of kids, you could have them trace the length your body for the other side of the rectangle, or just use the width of their body.)
Examine the Shapes
We looked at the shapes. Are the sides the same or different? Which side is longer? Shorter?
Then the boys walked the shapes to see how many steps it took them to walk each side. Using chalk I wrote the number of steps for each side. Counting the steps was a little tricky, because they steps had to be fairly uniform so that the numbers stayed proportional!
We also got out a tape measure and measured the lines.
For my toddler, he mostly had fun following his big brother around, looking at the tape measure, and talking about shapes and numbers.
Be sure to check out these other Move and Learn activities for active reading ideas:
Find the Letter and Swat It! from Hands On: As We Grow
Sight Word Cup Crash from Coffee Cups & Crayons