Ready-To-Use Teaching Ideas: Math / Movement
- masking tape
- large cut-out paper shapes
- instrumental music
Objective: Children will practice recognizing shapes while using gross-motor skills.
In Advance: In an open area of the room, use masking tape to form very large geometric shapes on the floor (or use large cut-out shapes taped securely to the floor). Aim to have at least three each of the basic shapes: circle, square, and triangle.
1 Point out the shapes on the floor. Walk around each shape and name it with the help of the children. Next, invite children to identify matching shapes. Ask: "Who can stand on a triangle? Now, who can stand on another triangle?" Repeat for each shape. (Remember that children may not know the shape names and will need clues to know to which shape you are referring.)
2 Play a warm-up game that helps children get the feeling of the shapes. Put on gentle music and invite two or three children to walk around the outside of a shape. Start them at the top or at a corner of the shape and have them walk slowly around the edge, moving clockwise. Ask them to try to stay on the tape lines or on the edge of the cut-out shape, like a tightrope walker.
3 Now invite children to play musical squares, a cooperative game that's similar to musical chairs. The object of the game is for everyone to find a particular shape to stand on when the music stops. Nobody is "out" because everyone works together to squeeze onto the shape.
4 Begin by having the children find places to stand outside of the shapes. Play music and encourage them to move around the shapes in any way they wish. Then stop the music and name one of the shapes (for example, "circle"). Tell children to stop moving and find a circle to stand on. Once everyone has at least a toe touching a circle, applaud the children for cooperating so well. Repeat this process for as long as children's interest holds. Curriculum Connection
Cooking: Ask children to cut out bread shapes using soft sliced bread and a variety of geometric - shaped cookie cutters. Fill several plastic bowls with fruit spread, peanut butter, cream cheese, and sliced cheese. Provide each child with a plastic knife. Invite them to make a sandwich with their bread shapes. Remember: Younger children may need assistance spreading food items onto their bread.