Math Art Book Project: Shapes

We are back with another awesome Book Art project designed by the fabulous Ana of Babble Dabble Do. Last month we explored storytelling with pop-up books and today we are playing around with math art and geometry while creating a shapes book. After you and the kids make the project, be sure to read the books I recommend. You’ll find 5 at the bottom of this post, and 5 over at Babble Dabble Do.

Make a shape book. A fun math art project.

If you saw yesterday’s post about the Kaleidograph Design Toy (if not, head over there and enter the giveaway!) this cut out shape book follows a similar concept. Each page opens up to reveal a new shape in descending size. As with all of Babble Dabble Do’s projects, the design of the book is exceeding pleasing to the eye.

Math Art: Make a Shape Book

The first thing you need to do is head over and download the template —> My Shape Book Template at Babble Dabble Do. You will also find all the instructions for assembly on Ana’s post.

Make a shapes book project.

My 5 year old and I decided to color our book with watercolors, but Ana has some other variations, too.

Using watercolors to design a shapes book for a math art project.

At first New Kid was quite adamant that I NOT cut out the shapes! I had to explain to him that the entire design and function of the book was based on the cut outs so he relented, but insisted that I cut them out veeeerrrry carefully.

Putting together a shape book art project.

I think his favorite part of the whole project was stacking the shapes in order. He had recently played with the Kaleidograph, so the concept of relative size was fresh in his mind.

He liked naming the shapes as he turned the pages. Geometry lesson? Check!

Mat art project shapes book to show relative size.

He did, however inform me that I had forgotten to include a diamond and a rumpus. (That would be a “rhombus” to the rest of us.)

Create a shapes book to teach kids geometry.

The watercolor paper was too thick to staple, so I used a hole punch and a piece of yarn to bind the shape book pages together.

Take a peek at what Ana created:


Children’s Books about Shapes

Read these books to teach your children more about the wonderful role shapes play in our world. (Affiliate links included below.)

Museum Shapes. Recently my son’s kindergarten class went on a field trip to the MOMA, and my older son’s 3rd grade class has visited both the Met and the Guggenheim. (I know! How cool is that?) I love that we are able to visit some amazing art in person and no doubt you have a wonderful museum or gallery near you. One of the best ways for young kids to learn about art is to look for familiar shapes in the pictures.

Round is a Mooncake: A Book of Shapes. Told in a gentle rhyme, a young girl looks around her home and neighborhood and discovers the shapes in objects. Many of the objects are culturally Chinese, like dim sum and inking stones. There is a glossary at the back so kids can learn about any unfamiliar items. I’m a big fan of Grace Lin’s illustrations, which bring this book to life.

Mouse Shapes. Three mice hide and escape from a cat by building with colorful shapes in this classic book. This is a nice introduction to shapes for younger kids.

Color Zoo Board Book. Lois Ehlert’s signature bold, graphic style is on display with this clever board book. The die-cut concept is similar to what Ana has created with her shape book for our project. As each page is turned a new layer reveals a different animal. On the reverse of each page, the shape is labelled so young kids can compare which shapes are used to make each creature.

When a Line Bends . . . A Shape Begins. Rhyming text takes kids on a journey demonstrating how a single line can transform into all kinds of shapes and objects. Got a ball of string? Cut off a piece and let your kids explore the concept on their own.

Find five more books to read at Babble Dabble Do.

Thanks again to Ana at Babble Dabble Do for designing this project. We hope you are enjoying our Book Art series as we look forward to bringing you another awesome project and book list soon.

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  1. says

    That is so fun! And pretty too! Definitely going to have to save this idea.

    I also wanted to let you know that I love your site – it is such a great resource! I linked to your site as an additional resource in an eBook I just released titled “Preschool at Home: Creating a Custom Plan in Eight Easy Steps.” Definitely want to sent people here for more great information on preschool at home!

    You can check out the eBook here –

    Thanks for all the work you do putting this site together!

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