Discussions Regarding the Preschool Observation Checklist and Evaluation Tool (POCET)

Monday, May 16, 2011

Activity Idea: Shape Scavenger Hunt

Head Start QuickSource® reminds us that math is everywhere: Shapes are everywhere! Children can learn to recognize, describe, and sort items according to size and shape simply by exploring their environment.

Here's an activity called Shape Scavenger Hunt that gets children excited about math with a "seek and find" game. Children will learn to recognize, describe, compare and name common shapes they find in familiar settings. For this activity you will need: poster board, contact paper, scissors, and markers.

Before you start: Draw and cut out various shapes – rectangles, circles, ovals, squares, etc. – on poster board using a marker. Use contact paper to make the cards extra durable.

Let's Get Started!
Discuss various shapes with the children using the shape cards. For example, a square has four equal sides, and a rectangle has two long sides and two short sides.

2) Can the children find the shapes in the classroom? A bulletin board is an example of a rectangle; a clock is an example of a circle, etc.

3) Go outside with the children to find more shapes.

4) Hold up a card featuring one of the shapes. Then challenge the children to find an example of that shape. A sidewalk is an example of a rectangle, a rock is a circle, etc.


Extend the activity by playing a game of "Shape I Spy." Say, "I spy a red circle. Can you find it?" Continue giving the children clues until the object is found. Have the children take turns being the spy.

If using POCET™, this activity corresponds to developmental guidelines MA8: Recognizes and Manipulates Basic Shapes. This activity also corresponds to the Geometry & Spatial Sense element of the Mathematics Knowledge & Skills Head Start Learning Domain.

For more developmentally-appropriate activities, visit Teacher QuickSource® and browse through all age areas, including Preschool, Kindergarten, Infant & Toddler, and Head Start. Don't forget to explore activities promoting environmental awareness at Environmental QuickSource®.

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