Video segment about me, by the school district

Sunday, January 29, 2012

Mouse Shapes

The book "Mouse Shapes" by Ellen Stoll Walsh
I went to a Math Solutions workshop last year, and they mentioned the book Mouse Shapes.  Of course, I had read Mouse Paint and Mouse Count before, but Mouse Shapes was new to me.  The story is about some mice trying to hide from a cat, and they  hide in a box of - yes, you guessed it - shapes!  The mice make different pictures by holding up the shapes.  So I thought, "Why not teach my children how to do that?"  I cut out large pieces of poster board.  The children would look at the book, look at a giant pile of poster board shapes on the floor, and then arrange themselves and their chosen shapes into the correct design.  I also followed up this activity by cutting out tiny shapes, having them make a design at their table, and asking them how many of each shape they used.

Students holding shapes to make a house and a moon

Students holding shapes to make a fish

Students holding shapes to make a wagon
Here is another really cool shape place mat that I've used before.  I had students match and identify foods and other items by gluing pieces to the mat.  I assessed my students by asking them to point out what shapes they had on their mats.  It's really not that bad if you walk around with a chart while the children are gluing and placing their shapes.

Students gluing shapes onto their place mats.
These two songs  are excellent for teaching shapes:  "We Know Our Shapes" by Mar Harmon and "Spy a Shape" by Dr. Jean.  What I really like about Mar Harmon's song is that she makes a sound effect for each shape.  For example, for a triangle she'll say "Ting!  Ting!  Ting!"  This is so fab because the children can draw it, see it, and hear it.  Dr. Jean's song is also fantastic because the children are singing, drawing, and then finding the shape around the room.

Let me know what you think!


  1. I have tagged you. Come on over to my blog and check out the rules and my questions for you.

    Queen with Class

  2. I love this!!! :) I am going to try this next week! Thanks!

  3. This is one of my daughter's favorites. I had just decided to use this book for a similar lesson plan project I have to do for one of my early childhood education classes. I'm not surprised others are doing it. The books are so cute!