math, Performance Task Assessment

Geometry Categorize It: Plane Shapes & Their Attributes

Geometry…it’s tricky, friends! Between remembering all the plane shapes third graders should know and the attributes that make those shapes, well, those shapes, there’s just a lot of KNOWING. So, I wondered how to make it stick through a hands-on, simple activity that would gets kiddos talking geometry. Then, it hit me: categorizing figures!

SO, I created 36 figures for students to sort into groups of their choosing. We started the lesson by reviewing how shapes can be classified (polygons, quadrilaterals, right angles, etc.). Then, I sent the students off to work with a Categorize It: Plane Shapes & Their Attributes packet of shapes and a large piece of construction paper. The task: categorize the shapes into at least three different groups based on their attributes.


It went really well! 

Students cut out the shapes and as I circulated the room, listening to their conversations, I found that they were talking a lot about different geometrical attributes. Within partnerships, I overheard students discussing why a rhombus should go in the quadrilateral category while her partner discussed why it should be in the parallelogram section. Another student discussed that the category his partner created could not be “lots of sharp edges” because that isn’t a geometrical attribute, but it could be “all acute angles” instead.


I was so impressed with the students’ work in my classroom…I feel like I gained so much information about the learning they had done during this unit through my formative assessment. I also felt like they were prepared to start planning our school’s first Geolympic Games!


Here are some photos from this super awesome activity!


Click here to check out this geometry resource!

Plane Shape Categorize It

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