Attribute Blocks Activities

Hands-on activities to stimulate children’s minds

These five Attribute Blocks activities guide pre-kindergarten to second grade children in the active exploration of math by encouraging them to think critically, plan strategically, and share their conclusions with others. Each activity emphasizes communication, exploration, problem solving, and analysis. Here are the activities in the Attribute Block series:

  1. Introducing and Examining Shapes, Colors, and Sizes
  2. Sorting and Classifying (Size, Color, Shape, and Thickness)
  3. Sets
  4. Patterns
  5. Logical Thinking

Introducing and Examining Shapes, Colors, and Sizes

Group Size: Pairs or Small Groups

Procedure: Provide a set of Attribute Blocks for each group of students. Instruct students to examine their blocks. Ask students to describe the blocks. Discuss how the blocks are alike and how they are different.

Hold up a square Attribute Block.

  • How many sides does this block have? [four]
  • Are all the sides the same length? [yes]
  • What do we call the shape of this block? [square]

Hold up a triangle Attribute Block.

  • How many sides does this block have? [three]
  • What do we call the shape of this block? [triangle]

Hold up a rectangle Attribute Block.

  • How many sides does this block have? [four]
  • Are all the sides the same length? [No. Two sides are long, and two sides short.]
  • What do we call the shape of this block? [rectangle]

Hold up a hexagon Attribute Block.

  • How many sides does this block have? [six]
  • Are all the sides the same length? [yes]
  • What do we call the shape of this block? [hexagon]

Hold up a circle Attribute Block.

  • How many sides does this block have? [None. It is round.]
  • What do we call the shape of this block? [circle]

If the following chart is developmentally appropriate for your students, you may wish to create it on the chalkboard.

Block Shape Number of Sides
Triangle 3
Square 4
Rectangle 4
Hexagon 6
Circle 0

Hold up a blue Attribute Block.

Instruct students to find another block that is the same color. The block matched in color need not be the same shape or size.

  • What color is the block I am holding? [blue]
  • What color is the block you have matched? [blue]

Continue this matching for the red and yellow blocks. As the students provide matching color blocks, you may wish to review the names of the block shapes.

Hold up a large square Attribute Block.

Instruct students to find a block that is the same shape, only small in size. The small square need not be the same color as the large square block.

Continue this activity for the other blocks–circle, rectangle, triangle, and hexagon. As your students become more proficient at matching sizes, large to small and vice versa, you may wish to become more specific in providing directions.

For example:

  • I am holding a large red triangle. Show me the same block, only smaller in size. [small red triangle]

Encourage students to be specific about shape, color, and size in describing the Attribute Blocks. Students should make use of correct, appropriate vocabulary.



 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Attribute Blocks Activities

Hands-on activities to stimulate children’s minds

These five Attribute Blocks activities guide children in the active exploration of the world of math by encouraging them to think critically, plan strategically, and share their conclusions with others. Each activity emphasizes communication, exploration, problem solving, and analysis. Here are the activities in the Attribute Block series:

  1. Introducing and Examining Shapes, Colors, and Sizes
  2. Sorting and Classifying by Size, Color, Shape, and Thickness
  3. Create and Identify Sets
  4. Create and Identify Patterns
  5. Develop Logical Thinking

Get started with the introductory activity. Then sign up now to get the rest of the Attribute Blocks activities delivered right to your email inbox.

Introducing and Examining Shapes, Colors, and Sizes (Download the PDF)

Group Size: Pairs or Small Groups

Procedure: Provide a set of Attribute Blocks for each group of students. Instruct students to examine their blocks. Ask students to describe the blocks. Discuss how the blocks are alike and how they are different.

Hold up a square Attribute Block.

  • How many sides does this block have? [four]
  • Are all the sides the same length? [yes]
  • What do we call the shape of this block? [square]

Hold up a triangle Attribute Block.

  • How many sides does this block have? [three]
  • What do we call the shape of this block? [triangle]

Hold up a rectangle Attribute Block.

  • How many sides does this block have? [four]
  • Are all the sides the same length? [No. Two sides are long, and two sides short.]
  • What do we call the shape of this block? [rectangle]

Hold up a hexagon Attribute Block.

  • How many sides does this block have? [six]
  • Are all the sides the same length? [yes]
  • What do we call the shape of this block? [hexagon]

Hold up a circle Attribute Block.

  • How many sides does this block have? [None. It is round.]
  • What do we call the shape of this block? [circle]

If the following chart is developmentally appropriate for your students, you may wish to create it on the chalkboard.

Block Shape Number of Sides
Triangle 3
Square 4
Rectangle 4
Hexagon 6
Circle 0

Hold up a blue Attribute Block.

Instruct students to find another block that is the same color. The block matched in color need not be the same shape or size.

  • What color is the block I am holding? [blue]
  • What color is the block you have matched? [blue]

Continue this matching for the red and yellow blocks. As the students provide matching color blocks, you may wish to review the names of the block shapes.

Hold up a large square Attribute Block.

Instruct students to find a block that is the same shape, only small in size. The small square need not be the same color as the large square block.

Continue this activity for the other blocks–circle, rectangle, triangle, and hexagon. As your students become more proficient at matching sizes, large to small and vice versa, you may wish to become more specific in providing directions.

For example:

  • I am holding a large red triangle. Show me the same block, only smaller in size. [small red triangle]

Encourage students to be specific about shape, color, and size in describing the Attribute Blocks. Students should make use of correct, appropriate vocabulary.