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Shape Stretch


This activity incorporates balance and movement along with many different mathematical concepts.


One of each color (red, green, blue, yellow):

Background for Teachers

Incorporate balance and movement along with many different mathematical concepts with Shape Stretch. As it is written in this lesson, this activity is only used for addition and subtraction. Shape Stretch should be used in small groups (five to six) so all children can have an adequate number of turns.

Note: Felt fabric works best to create Shape Stretch shapes. Attach Velcro to the back. Construction paper works also. Do not laminate as pieces will become too slippery and Velcro will not attach to lamination.

Intended Learning Outcomes

4. Develop physical skills and personal hygiene.
5. Understand and use basic concepts and skills.

Instructional Procedures

Invitation to Learn
Ask students if they have played Twister. Ask students to tell you about the game and how you win or loose. Explain that Shape Stretch is much the same as Twister, but the rules are a little different.

Instructional Procedures

  1. Explain the rules to the class. With five players, three will be on the Shape Stretch board actually playing and one will be the dice roller and the other will be the spinner.
  2. As one of the players on the board falls or has an incorrect response, s/he will take the place of the dice roller or the spinner and that child will then enter the activity on the board.
  3. Before placing his/her hand or foot on the shape, the child playing on the board needs to find the sum or difference of the numbers and locate the correct answer using the key.
  4. The child then needs to hold that position until his/her next turn. If the child falls or places his/her hand or foot on the incorrect shape, s/he is out and a new player comes in to take his/her place.


Modifications may be necessary for students with disabilities. For example, they may not be able to use their feet, but they can use their hands, or vise versa. Also because of physical limitations students may only be able to be spinners or dice rollers. A fun way for these students to play is to have them roll the dice or spin the spinner, but then they get to choose a player of their choice to put their hand or foot on the correct shape.

Extensions for this activity could be designed in the way that it is played. For example, the rules can be modified for higher-level learners because they write and/or solve story problems instead of rolling dice. They may also graph the results of the spinner to help predict probability.

Extensions for this activity for lower level learners may be done by using one die so students are working on number recognition and one to one correspondence. It may also be played with no dice and students work on shape or color recognition.

Integration into language arts can occur by having students write story problems to be used instead of dice, or use number word cards, color word cards, or shape word cards to help with sight word recognition.

Family Connections
This is a great activity for students to make in class and then take home to share with their families. Use this activity throughout the year with families to reinforce different math concepts students are learning in school.

Assessment Plan

Observation of how students interact during this activity serves as a great assessment.

Created: 09/14/2004
Updated: 02/05/2018