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How to Teach Shapes For a Toddler? 9 Helpful ideas

Disclaimer: This post Disclosure might contain Amazon affiliate links. Any purchase made through such links will award me a small commission (or referral fee), at no extra cost for you. Regardless of whether or not I receive a commission, I only recommend products that I personally use and/or genuinely love (I would never promote any products or services that I wouldn’t pay for myself), and I always have my readers’ best interest at heart.

One of the many preschool skills that your toddler will need to master for kindergarten readiness is shape recognition. I love preschool education and I am always looking for fun and exciting ways to teach shapes for toddlers. In this post, I have included the best ways to teach your child shapes as well as answers to the most frequently asked questions regarding this subject.

The best way to teach shapes for a toddler is through play and involves using their senses to explore the characteristics of each shape.

Here is 9 of the best activities to teach shapes for a toddler:

  • Melissa & Doug Shapes puzzle
  • Building shapes out of playdough
  • Wooden Blocks
  • Finger painting shapes
  • Books that talk about shapes
  • Songs about shapes
  • Food that takes the form of shapes
  • Multi-textures Sensory shapes

At what age do toddlers learn shapes?

shapes for a toddler: At what age do toddlers learn shapes?

Toddlers develop the ability to differentiate and learn shapes between ages 18-36 months. You can start teaching shapes for your toddler as early as 18 months, just be sure not to pressure your little one. It is important to be patient and to understand that your toddler will learn on their own time.

What Shapes should I teach my toddler first?

You should start teaching your toddler the basic, primary shapes first and then move on to secondary shapes. The best order of teaching shapes is as follows: circle, square, triangle, star, oval, rectangle, heart, diamond.

What shapes should a two year old know?

If you started teaching your toddler shapes at age 18 months, then by the time your toddler reached 2 years old they will most likely know the circle, square, triangle, and star.
I want to repeat how important it is not to pressure your toddler or yourself. This will only inhibit their learning. Patience is key and makes it fun.

How do I teach my toddler shapes?

Melissa & Doug Chunky Shapes puzzle

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I love the chunky puzzle pieces because it allowed my kids to better manipulate the puzzle pieces. They can hold them in their hands and trace the outside of the shapes with their fingers. I would call out a shape and ask them to bring it to me. Melissa and Doug make the best educational toys, I even used their number puzzles to teach my toddler number recognition.

Building Shapes out of Playdough

shapes for a toddler: build shapes out of playdough

Building shapes out of playdough is an excellent multi-sensory way to teach shapes for toddlers. This is great for hands-on learners. manipulating playdough also strengthens fine motor skills for prewriting.

Wooden Blocks

Playing with blocks helps to build both fine and gross motor skills. It also boosts attention span, self-confidence, and encourages independent play. You can teach your toddler shapes by naming the shapes the different shapes that they are using to build their towers.

Finger Painting Shapes

a preschooler finger painting.

Teaching your child shapes through art is an excellent way for your toddler to learn. Finger painting is another way to boost fine motor skills. Your child can actually learn colors and shapes concurrently through finger painting colorful shapes.

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Reading Books about Shapes

A mom playing with her baby on the floor and teaching her how to read by reading a picture book to her.

Reading to your toddler is one of the most important ways that you can teach your toddler. There are so many wonderful books about shapes that you can read to your toddler. The great thing about this is that shapes are everywhere. You can even point out shapes that are in your child’s favorite book!

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Sing Songs About Shapes

Children are better able to retain information when presented to them through songs. Songs are a great way to help children memorize lessons while having so much fun. A great tip is to involve movement. I like for us to dance as we sing about shapes, this further cements the lesson into their minds. Our favorite YouTube songs to sing are from Cocomelon, Pinkfong, and Bob the Train.

Food That Takes the Form of Shapes

shapes for a toddler: food in the form of shapes

Playing with food is a natural way of exploring taste and textures. Allowing your child to explore with their food is a great way to have fun learning about shapes. Your toddler will get a kick out of learning that shapes are everywhere. Your toddler can sort shapes right from their plate. Here are some ideas about preparing food in different shapes.

Textured Sensory Shapes

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Help your child explore colors, shapes, and textures at the same time. The soft bumpy spikes allow your child to experience different textures. These fun and colorful shapes are a perfect educational toy to teach your toddler shapes.

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Conclusion

You can teach your toddler shapes by practicing every day. There are many ways to teach shapes for a toddler but to make it easier and more fun, it is best to combine several of these methods.

Disclaimer: This post Disclosure might contain Amazon affiliate links. Any purchase made through such links will award me a small commission (or referral fee), at no extra cost for you. Regardless of whether or not I receive a commission, I only recommend products that I personally use and/or genuinely love (I would never promote any products or services that I wouldn’t pay for myself), and I always have my readers’ best interest at heart.

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