In the early years of learning it is important to teach through hands on learning experiences and fun activities. Here we share our favorite shape games for preschoolers to make learning fun!
Research indicates that students retain more information and learning material through hands on learning. Whereas worksheets and formal instruction can take students more than 200 times to learn one concept. Also, learning through play also helps develop social emotional skills, problem solving, cooperation, and so much more. Whether you are a classroom teacher or a homeschooling parent learning through fun games and activities will help your child learn and grow in multiple areas.
Here are 10 different games for preschoolers and directions on how to play them. Some games contain links to other helpful blog posts and products to purchase to play these games. These activities are easy for toddlers and preschoolers to play at home or in a school setting. So try out these fun activities with your kids and watch them learn 2D shapes with ease from a very early age!
One of my favorite things to do is build escape rooms and fun learning centers for kids of all ages. In this shape escape room students will trace shapes, find clue words, and solve a mystery. Furthermore, this escape room is perfect for preschoolers because they are basically tracing the shape they find on their own paper. This escape room is great for any time throughout the year to review 2D shapes. To learn more about the shape escape room click here. My child loves the shape game for preschoolers because of the mystery to solve like a real detective. Adding a mystery makes this game that much more fun!
Shape Bingo is a fun shape game for preschool aged kids because the instructor can call out a particular shape or display it while the students cover it up. Also, teachers can adapt shape Bingo based on students’ skill level. For example, when learning 2D shapes a teacher can show the shape and say the shape name as students locate it on their card to cover up. Then, as they learn to identify the shapes more the instructor can just say the shape name or show the shape word on the board while students find the geometric drawing. There are so many ways to adapt this shape bingo game for student’s needs.
One of my favorite shape games for preschoolers is a hunt. For example, the teacher can hide different shapes around the room and students have to sort the shapes by placing them in the correct bin. Also, they can hunt for real shape objects to place in the correct bin too. For example, students can grab a clock and place it in the circle bin. By finding really toys and objects they are understanding shapes in the real world.
Another way to play shape hunt is to go outside and search for different shapes they see in nature. The playground is full of different shapes students can identify and talk about. Same with sport fields, tree areas, and even street signs. Just by taking kids on a walk around the block there are so many signs and areas to find shapes! If your students like to move!
Like a shape hunt I took sticky notes drew different 2D shapes on them and hung-up bigger shapes on the wall. Next, my child went around looking for these sticky notes to place on top of the correct shape cut out I had. I love this game because I can draw the shapes on the sticky notes upside down and sideways. This is another standard student need to learn that no matter what direction the shape is if it has three sides it is still a triangle. Since I homeschool, I hid these in all different rooms, and we used some magnifying glasses to really make this more of a detective hunt.
Next, there are many ways students can build different shapes 2D and 3D. For example, we love playdough activities to help increase fine motor skills. My child uses our shape playdough mats to recreate the 2D shape. Also, pretzels and marshmallows or you can use playdough and tooth picks to create different shapes too. Another way to build shapes is using wooden craft sticks like popsicle sticks to build different shapes.
If your kids like to move this fun shape twister game is great for gross motor skills and shape identification. To play, cut out different shapes and colors of each shape. Next spread out on the floor and have small groups of kids play at one time. You can even use a twister mat and tape down different shapes on top of the dots too. Then, call out different shapes and colors of the shape and what hand or foot to put there. This is a super fun shape games for preschoolers because it uses gross motor skills, colors, and shape recognition skills. This one will be a favorite!
After using the shapes to play twister I take those shapes off, and we play a shape jump game! For example, I say something like “Crab walk to find the blue triangle.” Then, my child does the crab walk to pick up the blue triangle and bring it to me. This is another fun shape game that uses gross motor skills. Other ways to grab a shape is hop, jump, skip, run, crawl, walk, army crawl, jump on one foot, and bear crawl too!
Although this is not a game shape crafts are a great idea for students to get creative and create their own shape monster, robot, or animal. I love student lead crafts so that my child can use her creativity to design her own object. For example, I set out different colored 2D shapes and allow her to glue them together to create something wonderful! Some kids like to create shape robots, monsters, animals, or even an nature scene too. Afterwards, we count how many of each shape we used to make this masterpiece. I also love how everyone can have such a different masterpiece but still work on shapes and even counting.
If it is nice outside when you are teaching shapes get outside and play shape hopscotch. To play draw a normal hopscotch square and draw different shapes in the middle of each square. Next, have students roll a rock and hop to get it. As they hop instead of counting the numbers, they can say the different shapes! This is a fun shape games for preschoolers to play outside and increase gross motor skills too.
Erase it is another fun outdoor activity to play with chalk. To play students can draw different shapes the teacher says which is a great way for an informal assessment too! Next, call out different shapes to draw. Then, give each student a cup of water or spray bottle of water. Then, have students erase different shapes as you call them out. This makes drawing and identifying shapes more fun when it is through hands on learning and outside! Also, when using a squirt bottle this is great for increasing fine motor skills too.
Finally, we play tape shapes which you can play indoors or outdoors. To play the instruction creates shapes out of painters tape. If there is enough room, you can create all different 2D shapes for students to identify and practice. Next, have students use pom-poms, rocks, sticks, anything and place it on the painters tape. We honestly use princess dolls to outline the shapes. Since princesses are a big deal in our household by combining my child’s interest with geometry and making it hands-on it is the perfect combination for learning.
In conclusion these are our favorite shape games for preschoolers that we play throughout the year and activities for indoor and outdoor learning. Since this list provides great indoor and outdoor activities, we can keep learning and reviewing shapes all year long. Which one of these fun activities are you going to try first?
My name is Nicole and I am so glad you are here! I have always loved photography and have taken classes. Then I started my teacher journey and fell in love with creating resources for what I needed in the classroom. Now I have combined both of my passions to bring you spectacular resources!