Quadrilateral Fun!

April 7, 2013

This is one of my favorite activities for teaching quadrilaterals! I look forward to using it every year. I have used this activity (or one like it) to introduce quadrilaterals to my class and help them to start determining the attributes of certain quadrilaterals.

First, I hand each team of a two a bag with the shape cards in it. I tell them to sort the shapes in some way that makes sense to both of them. (I cut them apart ahead of time.)

They could sort in any way they wanted, as long as they could explain it to me. Except a category that was “shapes with 4 sides.” Because they all had 4 sides. But you know I still had to say that to several teams…”A group won’t work if ALL the shapes are in it, right?” Anyway…I digress.

They sorted their shapes and then recorded them on this graphic organizer.

(This pic is old. The new graphic organizer has much more room!)

Most of the categories focused on names of the shapes that they knew, like rectangles and squares. But some teams dug a little deeper and found shapes with parallel sides, different types of angles and some started looking for shapes with sides that were all the same length, all different lengths and some sides the same.

This was a great way to assess what they already knew, and helped me to plan for next steps in my instruction on quadrilaterals.

If teaching quadrilaterals is coming up on your calendar, you might find this resource useful! You can pick it up at my Teachers Pay Teachers store. It includes several pages of quadrilateral shape cards, the graphic organizer above AND a graphic organizer to sort by shape name, and two different Venn diagrams for comparing quadrilateral attributes. It has recently been updated to include a reference page for students to keep track of their learning and a quiz to assess their understanding! (I have also added answer keys.) Included in this product are several ideas for use in the classroom and references to the Common Core standards addresses. Click the picture below or right {here} to grab yourself a copy!

If you are studying triangles, then you could use the Triangles Sort in the same way! Click the picture or {here} to check it out.
AND if you manage to squeeze both quadrilaterals and triangles in, you can save some money and grab both in the Shape Sort Bundle!

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  • Reply Jen February 13, 2016 at 10:12 pm

    Nice post! Having students create their own categories for sorting is a great idea–it can really reveal so much about where they are in their understanding!

  • Reply Kelly February 14, 2016 at 12:18 am

    You always have a ton of great geometry ideas!

  • Reply The Craft of Teaching March 21, 2016 at 4:34 am

    Thanks Jen! I'm always fascinated to see what they say! Thanks for stopping by!


  • Reply The Craft of Teaching March 21, 2016 at 4:34 am

    Thanks, Kelly!!! 🙂

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