Geometry is an important concept to teach in third grade. Students are learning about different types of shapes that are in the same category, such as quadrilaterals.
Learning the attributes of these shapes is important because students will use what they have learned and apply it to other third grade math skills, such as area, perimeter, fractions, and measurement.
So, what are some different third grade geometry activities? Check out six of my favorite activities, and while you’re reading, be sure to grab a copy of 20 real life photographs you can use during your instruction.
Check out these third grade geometry activities!
I am a big fan of interactive notebooks when they are useful tools for students, and not major time wasters.
In my third grade geometry unit, I included interactive notebook pages that are actually the shape of the shape!
Students can list the attributes of the shape, and draw examples, and under the flap you can even have them draw some nonexamples of the shape.
Students really love to use geoboards and rubber bands. Once you have taught your students the different shapes, you can challenge them to create them on geoboards.
You can also practice making different lines, such as parallel lines, intersecting lines, and perpendicular lines.
Since geoboards have pegs, you can challenge students to make lines that are the same/different lengths.
Here are some examples:
- Make two parallel lines that have different lengths.
- Make two perpendicular lines that have the same length.
- Create an example of intersecting lines that are not perpendicular.
- What shape could you create from the lines on your board?
Create and play games
I love using games to teach. That’s why you will find so many of them included in my guided math units. Games are a great way to practice skills that have been taught.
A lot of times, teachers aren’t sure what to do when they have students who perform above grade level. One of my favorite things to do is get them creating.
Making games that can be played in the class are a great way for students to show what they have learned.
There are several easy types of games students can make.
Candyland is a basic game for children because it involves simple matching. Students can make this type of game with any math concept you are teaching.
Simply provide them with index cards (I like to cut the small ones in half) and a large piece of paper to make their board. (I like to use the large construction paper.
Normally I give my students white and they add decorations with crayons and markers.)
If you use my Guided Math Shapes Unit, there is a blank board included!
Bingo style games are another type of game that students can create. It is very similar to having students create the Candyland style board game, but instead of making a board that is traveled, students fill in a square grid.
You can have each student fill in their own blank grid, and then you call out shapes. Everyone will have their own unique board. At the end of the game, you can collect them and mix them up for next time. To differentiate, you can write the names of shapes for students who needed additional support.
Real world geometry hunt
To help connect mathematical concepts that we teach, it’s always fun to bring it back to the real world. Teaching geometry is no exception.
Here are some ways you can do a real world geometry hunt:
- Go around the school and playground to find examples of shapes in the real world.
- Go through catalogs, store ads, or old magazines and cut out examples of shapes.
- Create a slideshow of photos you have pre-selected and have students identify the shapes they see. (You can find free stock photos at pixabay.com) Or, save time and grab the slideshow I’ve already put together for you!
How Many Different Ways Can You Make __?
This is a fun activity to do whole group or independently. If you are doing it whole group, you can make fun anchor charts showing different ways to make a shape.
Create an anchor chart on a piece of chart paper. Section off space for the different shapes you want to review (i.e., trapezoids, pentagons, triangles).
Allow students to come up and draw their own examples on the anchor chart. (You can also have them draw their examples on sticky notes and then adhere them to your chart. That way you don’t have to worry if they make a mistake.)
As a class, see how many different (triangles) you can make! Repeat for other shapes!
Need Resources for Teaching Geometry?
📓Check out these printable and digital resources for teaching geometry!💻
- 3rd Grade Guided Math -Unit 8 Shapes and Attributes
- 3rd Grade Guided Math Digital Companion -Unit 8 Shapes and Attributes
- Geometry Resources for Other Grade Levels
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