Looking for shape activities for preschoolers?
Teaching shapes in preschool can be a lot of fun! We are surrounded by shapes, so it’s a natural place to begin. You can explore shape recognition with your preschoolers in all kinds of fun ways.
As your preschoolers start to notice shapes around them, you can help them begin to name and recognize all the shapes they see. Keep reading to discover my favorite hands-on shape activities for preschoolers. Plus, games, toys, and books to read aloud with your preschoolers at home and in the classroom.
You won’t want to miss my fun and simple shape crafts for preschoolers. I’ve got seasonal shape crafts and shape activities for the holidays too. These are fun early learning practice for your preschool kiddos and easy for you to prep too!
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Tips for Teaching Shapes in Preschool
Beginning at age two, toddlers start to recognize the shape of objects around them. In preschool, kids can begin learning to identify and recognize which shape is which. This is a great time to begin formal shape lessons with your kids.
Learning about shapes helps preschoolers begin to develop an understanding of the world around them. Once they have mastered basic shapes like circles, squares, and triangles, preschoolers can focus on other shapes like hearts, stars, and ovals.
Soon, your preschoolers will be ready for three dimensional shapes like cubes, cones, and spheres too. For now, try beginning with simple shape crafts and hands-on shape activities for preschoolers to get the ball rolling.
Simple Shape Crafts You Can Do Right Now
There are lots of simple shape crafts you can do in your preschool classroom and at home to begin exposing your early learners to shapes in a way that’s inviting and fun. Cut-and-paste shape activities for preschoolers are perfect for practicing important fine motor skills too. Preschool learners can practice cutting and pasting to build strong finger muscles for handwriting as they create these adorable shape crafts.
Plus, don’t miss My Real Life Shape Book. It’s a printable early reader you can use to teach basic shapes to your preschoolers.
This little book is the perfect take home shape activity for preschoolers to practice recognizing shapes at home with their families.
My Favorite Shape Books to Read Aloud
These cut and paste shape activities work well with a picture book for your preschool circle time or morning basket. I love reading picture books aloud to my preschoolers because they’re the very best way to build early literacy skills. As you build your children’s vocabulary and print awareness with a cute book, they’ll be developing important pre-writing skills with the craft too.
If you’re looking for shape books to read aloud with your Halloween, Thanksgiving, or Christmas, you’ll love these picture books:
More Shape Activities for Preschool Circle Time
There are so many fun ways you can add shape activities to your preschool circle time or morning basket. Seasonal shape activities are a lot of fun and easy to incorporate in your preschool themes this fall and winter. You can use themed shape activities for preschoolers to keep reluctant learners engaged and get your kids excited about learning too.
Pumpkin Patch Shapes
One of my favorite fall shape activities for preschoolers involves the pumpkin patch. Kids love a trip to the pumpkin patch!
Did you know it’s possible to grow a square pumpkin? It’s true! You can purchase a Melon Mold to create pumpkins shaped like squares, hearts, and other fun shapes.
Learn about all kinds of fun shapes with pumpkins in your preschool circle time this fall. Cut shapes from orange felt or construction paper, add a “stem,” and have your preschoolers identify the different pumpkin shapes in your patch.
Hands-On Shape Activities for Preschoolers
There are lots of hands-on shape activities for preschoolers to practice their shape recognition skills with too. I’ve created some simple printables to make it easy for you to engage in hands-on practice with your kids this school year. Check out some of my favorite hands-on shape activities below.
Explore Shapes with a Halloween Sensory Bin
A fun way to learn about shapes with your preschoolers this October is by creating a shape sensory bin. Sensory bins create a multisensory learning experience that’s perfect for preschoolers. You can use this opportunity to teach your kids about shapes with a fun Halloween twist.
Get a cool Halloween or fall themed filler for your bin. Bowtie pasta dyed black makes a fun “batty” filler for Halloween sensory bins. Corn grains make an excellent Autumn sensory bin filler as well. Then, add these cute View-Thru Geometric Solids from Learning Resources or laminated printable shape cards.
Get Messy Building a Shape Snowman
This activity is especially fun for a snowy day! If you’ve got snow, get outdoors and have fun creating shapes in the snow with your preschoolers. If real snow isn’t an option, you can still build snow shapes with this hands-on activity.
You’ll need Floof Modeling Clay and silicone shape molds or cookie cutters in various shapes. Your preschoolers will have a blast making squares, triangles, and other shapes with this fun “snowy” clay.
Check out my Snowman Shape Printables for more shape practice with your preschoolers. These cute printables help preschoolers learn to identify and sort shapes into groups with a fun holiday theme.
Host a Holiday Shape Scavenger Hunt
A shape scavenger hunt is another fun activity you can use to help your preschoolers learn about shapes while getting them up and moving around the room. It’s a fun way to get the wiggles out in the final days before holiday break when preschoolers are full of excitement and finding it hard to focus.
Check out my Shape Scavenger Hunt printables to make it easy to plan a hunt for your preschoolers this December. Tape these printable shapes around your classroom or home for kids to seek out. You can make it extra fun with a magnifying glass or binoculars.
Add a fun holiday twist to your scavenger hunt shape activity for preschoolers by adding bows to the shapes to form “shape gifts.” Then, tell your preschoolers they have a very important job to do. They must help Santa’s elves find all the missing gifts hidden around the room.
Create Fun Shapes with Play Dough Mats
Another fun and easy hands-on shape activity for preschoolers is to use playdough mats. Adding play dough or modeling clay to your preschool lessons is an easy way to make everything more fun. Plus, it’s great for helping kids build strong finger muscles for handwriting.
Check out my printable Shape Play Dough Mats, part of my bundle of 8 printable shape activities for preschoolers. You can add them to your preschool centers this year. You’ll get basic shapes like circles, triangles, squares, and more challenging shapes like hearts and stars too.
Games and Toys for Teaching Shape Recognition
If you’re looking for gift ideas for your favorite preschoolers or resources you can add to a fun math center in your preschool classroom, you’re in the right place! I’m excited to share my favorite games and toys for teaching shape recognition to preschoolers with you. Check out some of my favorites below.
Shape sorter toys and activities allow your preschooler to strengthen all kinds of important early learning skills including hand-eye coordination, fine motor skills, problem-solving skills, and their ability to identify shapes. I love the Take-Along Shape Sorter from Fat Brain Toys because it’s made from high quality materials and portable for lots of shape learning fun wherever you go.
Playing with geoboards is a fun way to help preschoolers become familiar with shapes. Plus, they make introducing concepts like symmetry easy for early learners to understand.
Geoboards make it easy for kids to investigate lots of different shapes in a fun and hands-on way. I’m a fan of these double-sided geoboards because they offer more play options with two sides and plastic spokes that are safer for preschoolers and younger kids too. Grab my 2D shape geoboard cards to pair with this resource for more learning fun.
Pattern blocks are a fun addition to any preschool lesson about shapes. Some of my favorite shape activities for preschoolers include pattern blocks. They’re great for helping kids learn to manipulate shapes, create patterns, and explore important early geometry concepts.
You can purchase books with patterns for pattern blocks or Pattern Design Cards like the ones from Learning Resources to include with your blocks. My favorite pattern blocks are the Wooden Pattern Blocks from 3 Bees and Me because they come with fun patterns for preschooelrs to copy as they explore and learn about shapes.
Which shape activities for preschoolers are your favorites? Share your favorite shape crafts, toys, games, and books in the comment section. I can’t wait to read them and add a few of your favorites to my shape lesson plans this year too!