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Shaping Shapes | Activities | WTTW Kids Learn & Play

Children will have the chance to recreate shapes, just like their Sesame Street pals! The ease of yarn will aid young students in creating the forms themselves!

Cartoon child 'spying' fruits and vegetables at the supermarket

Activity Prep

  1. Before the activity begins, prepare a chart on the white board or large piece of paper that has four shapes (circle, rectangle, square, and triangle) on it and a blank column next to the shapes with the heading “Number of Sides.”


  1. Make sure all children in the group understand the concept of shapes by creating a “sides chart” that children can use as a reference for the remainder of classroom work with shapes. Tell the children that they will be learning about shapes today. Go through the four shapes on the “sides chart” (circle, rectangle, square, and triangle), asking how many sides each has (0, 4, 4, and 3, respectively). Then ask the children what the difference is between a square and a rectangle (a square has four equal sides, and a rectangle has two long sides and two short sides).
  2. Hand out a piece of yarn to each child (or one giant piece to the group) with the ends already tied together so it can be formed into different shapes. Play the video from Sesame Street of Ernie forming a chain into different shapes.
  3. After the video, practice doing the same with the children as they sit on the floor, referring back to the chart each time to review the number of sides.

Considerations/Modifications/Extension Activities

  1. Having an extra adult may be useful to help guide children who might be struggling to form shapes.
  2. For more adventurous children, consider expanding to form additional shapes.

Common Core Learning Standards for English Language Arts

  • The child will correctly name shapes regardless of their orientations or overall size. (CCSS.MATH. CONTENT.K.G.A.2)
  • The child will model shapes in the world by building shapes from components. (CCSS. MATH.CONTENT.K.G.B.5)

Items Needed

  • White board or large piece of paper with markers
  • One piece of yarn per child (approximately two feet long with the ends tied to create a loop)
  • Projector, TV, or computer with internet access for clip