How to Teach 2D Shapes With Fun Activities and Crafts for Kids

by Kelin George

June 6th 2023, 6:00 pm

Learning about 2D shapes is an essential part of early mathematics education for kids. Understanding the properties and names of these geometric shapes lays the groundwork for more advanced mathematical concepts. While teaching shapes may seem mundane, it can be transformed into an exciting and engaging experience for children. 


Let’s explore fun activities that parents and educators can use to teach kids about 2D shapes at home, turning learning into an enjoyable adventure.


Which 2D shapes should you introduce to kids?

When teaching kids about 2D shapes, it's important to start with the following basic shapes:

  • Circles
  • Squares
  • Triangles
  • Rectangles

These shapes are commonly encountered in everyday life and provide a strong foundation for shape recognition. As children become familiar with these shapes, you can gradually introduce more complex 2D geometric shapes, such as:

  • Pentagons
  • Hexagons
  • Octagons

By progressively introducing these shapes, children can develop a solid understanding of 2D geometry. Remember to incorporate fun activities into the learning process to engage young learners and reinforce shape recognition. Here’s how you can do it:


Also read: Foster PreK–Grade 3 Language Skills with Free Printable Worksheets

Exploring the world of 2D shapes for kids

Begin by introducing kids to the world of 2D shapes. Explain that these shapes exist on a flat surface and have only two dimensions—length and width.


Here are a few fun activities to help them identify and recognize different 2D shapes:


Shape hunt

Take children on a shape hunt around the house or backyard. Provide them with a list of shapes to find, such as circles, triangles, squares, rectangles, and more. 


Also read: Scavenger Hunt Worksheets: Fun Summer Activities for Kids

Encourage them to locate and name each shape they come across. This activity can not only familiarize children with shapes but can also enhance their observation skills.


Shape collage

Gather magazines, newspapers, and old catalogs. Ask children to cut out different 2D shapes they find and create a shape collage. 


They can glue the shapes onto a large sheet of paper, arranging them in creative ways. This activity can not only promote shape recognition but can also encourage artistic expression.


Hands-on fun activities to teach 2D shapes to kids

To reinforce understanding and make learning about 2D shapes more interactive, try these engaging hands-on fun activities:


Shape sorting

Create a shape-sorting game using cut-out shapes or shape flashcards. Give children a basket or container and ask them to sort the shapes based on their properties. 


For example, they can group all the triangles together or separate circles from squares. 


Playdough shapes

Get the playdough and cutters out to teach your little one’s 2D shapes in a fun way. Provide children with different colors of playdough and shape cutters. Let them roll out the playdough and use the cutters to create various 2D shapes.


Also read: Teach kindergarteners counting with crafts at home

As they mold the shapes, encourage them to name each one. Through playdough, your kid is exposed to sensory play along with shape exploration, making it enjoyable and educational.


Introduce 2D shapes through arts and crafts for kids

Combining art and crafts with shape learning can inspire creativity while reinforcing shape recognition. Here are a couple of shape-based art and craft activities:


Shape monsters

Ask children to draw and cut out various 2D shapes in different colors. You can also provide them with craft materials, like pipe cleaners, googly eyes, and glue, and ask them to make different 2D shapes


Let their imagination run wild as they use the shapes and materials to create unique shape monsters. Encourage them to name each monster based on the shapes used.


Geometric shapes print

Another fun way to teach 2D shapes to kids is through sponges or cut vegetables. 

You can also create stamps in different shapes. Dip the stamps into paint and let children make prints on paper or fabric. Encourage them to explore patterns and combinations of shapes to create vibrant geometric prints. With these fun crafts for kids, concepts like shape recognition are reinforced while experimenting with different materials.


Also read: Simple DIY Origami for Kids!

Teaching kids about 2D shapes can be an exciting journey filled with hands-on activities, art, and exploration. By incorporating fun activities at home, children can develop a solid foundation in geometry and shape recognition. 


From shape hunts to artistic creations, these engaging experiences will not only enhance their understanding of 2D shapes but also make learning an enjoyable and memorable experience. So, unleash your creativity, embrace the world of shapes, and embark on a geometric adventure with your little learners.


Head over to to learn more about our Active Learning approach to Math, Language, and Reading for children between Pre-K and Grade 3.  

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