A list of the best shape books and videos for teaching geometry in the primary classroom or at home. With these options, kids will enjoy learning about 2D and 3D shapes and geometry in fun, hands-on ways.
Children’s Books and Videos for Teaching About Shapes
I have always loved using books and videos to teach. I’ve found it has made learning more fun for students and even more memorable. I’ve gathered up my favorite geometry and shape books and videos to help you teach geometry to students.
In addition to teaching kids the names of shapes and their features, read aloud picture books and watch videos to help illustrate this important math topic to kids. Then, provide plenty of opportunities to find, describe, and build with shapes for a well-rounded math unit.
Shape Books for Teaching Geometry
Teaching geometry is a challenging but fun math topic to teach. There are many complex concepts for little learners to learn, and they may get confused without the proper examples and math tools as support. By using math manipulatives of 2D shapes and 3D solids, hands-on geometry activities, and picture books, kids (and parents) can begin to understand the concepts and make learning a memorable experience.
Here are my favorite shape books I share with kids year after year.
Shape Shift by Joyce Hesselberth
With bright illustrations that highlight shapes in all their forms, this informative shape book helps teach the identification of circles, squares, crescents, diamonds, triangles, rectangles, trapezoids, and ovals and encourages kids to pair shapes together to make new forms.
The Greedy Triangle by Marilyn Burns
Bored and unhappy with his life, a triangle visits a local shapeshifter to add another angle to his shape. Bam! He becomes a quadrilateral. But then he gets a little greedy and keeps adding angles until he’s completely transformed—a great introduction to shapes and basic math concepts.
Shapes That Roll by Karen Nagel
Some shapes roll, while others don’t. Some shapes stack, while others don’t. While other shapes lie down and other shapes stand tall. Students will learn about circles, squares, triangles, and even a little bit about ovals and diamonds!
Which One Doesn’t Belong?: Playing with Shapes by Christopher Danielson
Students will answer the same question about each set of four shapes: “Which one doesn’t belong?” The best part is there is no one right answer. Kids might describe the shaps as squished, smooshed, dented, or even goofy. But as long as they support their thinking, they’re talking about math!
This beautiful and informative picture book is a photographic matching game that teaches about shapes. Curious kids will love completing puzzles both in isolation and looking for shapes in the environment.
Big Box of Shapes by Wiley Blevins
Triangles, circles, and squares seem to be just simple shapes. But to Lulu and Max, these shapes found in a box take on exciting new purposes. What will you see? This book is a lovely way to introduce shapes, art, and imaginative play to young children.
Little World Math Concepts is a math series that explores early concepts and provides young students with clear definitions of concepts and many real-world examples. This book looks closely at the concept of symmetry and helps kids answer the question, “Is it symmetrical?”
If You Were a Quadrilateral by Molly Blaisdell
What could you do if you turned into a quadrilateral? You’d have four sides which could be a checkerboard, yoga mat, or even a kite. The easy-to-understand text, engaging illustrations, and real-life examples make it a must-have for any classroom bookshelf and geometry unit.
This book tackles two and three-dimensional objects, explaining length, width, and height and all the different ways you can represent those figures. The book also shows how changing the dimensions of an object also affects its size. A perfect book for students who are ready to grasp more complex geometry topics!
Captain Invincible and the Space Shapes by Stuart J. Murphy
Perfect for teaching 3-dimensional shapes to first, second, and third graders. Captain Invincible and his space dog, Comet, are on a mission to make it safely home. Throughout their mission, they encounter asteroids, poisonous gas, and aliens. But will their knowledge of three-dimensional shapes, including cubes, cones, and pyramids, help our heroes navigate beyond them?
Children’s Videos for Teaching Shapes
Videos are always a great tool in the classroom and while teaching. They are fun to watch, interactive at times, and can be an easy way to introduce a new topic or concept, like shapes. I use them often in my lessons, just like picture books, and kids often ask for me to replay the videos during free time, as a brain break idea, or if we finish our lessons early.
Jack Hartmann shows the shape and asks kids to identify the shape before he names it the first three times. The last time, children are asked to name the shape all on their own. The shapes are shown in both illustrations and shapes in our environment.
With the latest episodes of “StoryBots Super Songs,” kids learn all about circles, squares, triangles, rectangles, and rhombuses.
Kids will love learning about the different shapes with this shape song from PinkFong. It not only reviews the different shapes but also shows children where they can find shapes in the world around them.
Kids probably know all about Blippi since he is one of the most popular figures on YouTube and Netflix right now. Sing along with his shapes song, and children will learn what shapes they can find around them as well.
A simple song that helps kids learn common 2-dimensional shapes and shows the shapes around them. Each shape has its own style and song!
Free Pattern Block Symmetry Cards
Try teaching shapes in your classroom with these FREE pattern block cards. Add these symmetry cards to a math center with a bin of pattern blocks and have kids build with shapes.
Click the image below to grab a copy.
Shape Classroom Resources
Help your students learn about shapes, symmetry, and other math skills with comprehensive, hands-on, and fun resources by Proud to be Primary.
Mindful Math Geometry Units
If you like this resource, you’ll love the other Mindful Math products.
More Math Activities Ideas/Activities
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