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This post has been co-written with Ben Wolfson, a full-time educator and assistant principal in the USA.
For many, ‘tis the season to be jolly, unless you happen to have kindergarten students, in which case ‘tis the season to make everything Christmas themed to keep them engaged. December is an easy month to find a theme for your students, and this free Christmas printable is filled with enough elves, presents and snow to keep them practicing their 3D shape recognition all month long.
3D Shape Recognition In The Kindergarten Classroom
Most kindergarten students come into the grade being able to identify most of the common 2D shapes around them; triangles, squares, rectangles and circles. It’s the job of the kindergarten teacher to show them that these all have 3D versions; pyramids, cubes, cuboids and spheres. Helping students build their 3D shape recognition skills is tricky as they will tend to think about 3D shapes in terms of their 2D components. However, giving them plenty of hands-on experience with real life 3D objects helps them to develop their conceptual understanding and gives them a good set of 3D shape names to move into first grade with.
Preparing To Use 3D Shape Christmas Elf
For this activity you will need:
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This kindergarten 3d shape printable comes ready to print with clear pictures of real life 3D objects and their corresponding 3D shape names. Students can indicate their choices with a paperclip, peg or marker, though you’ll want to laminate a full set of the clip cards if you choose the last option.
Teaching With Kindergarten 3D shape printable
These kindergarten 3D shape printable pages require your students to be able to both mentally visualize the image in the picture and match it to a version of the three different options provided. It’s a tricky skill, especially if the students haven’t seen the objects in the picture before, so a good place to start with this free Christmas printable is to have the real life 3D objects on hand if students are having a hard time visualizing them. Other extension activities include:
Remove the options – a good challenge is to have students pull the 3D shape names out from their memory by showing them the images on each clip card without the options down the side. This will reinforce their 3D shape recognition as it removes the guesswork from the equation.
Find other examples – once your students have mastered this free Christmas printable, send them on a scavenger hunt around your classroom for other objects that match the shapes on the cards. You could add an extra Christmas theme here by wrapping up easily identifiable objects for students to classify and unwrap.
Sort the cards – another great way to help students develop 3D shape recognition is to have them talk about common characteristics of each shape. Once they’ve completed the initial task, have them sort the clip cards by the 3D shape. Then take each pile and talk about what makes each picture the same in terms of visible 2D shapes, corners and edges.
More Christmas Themed Centers
Like this? Then you’ll love my 10 Christmas Themed Literacy and Math Centers. These easy-prep games will get your students working on letters, phonics, numbers and more!
1) Build A Santa Numbers 1-10 – Match the number to the correct number word, tally mark and domino to form a Santa Claus
2) Christmas Bake Sale Counting Clipcards – Counting up to 20 with fine motor practice
3) Colorful Christmas Stocking Sorting – 6 color mats with 10 different toys to sort
4) Reindeer and Sleigh Number Match to 10 – Match the respective reindeer and sleigh numbered 1-10 for number recognition practice or use it for counting up to 10 by lining up the correct amount of reindeers
5) Santa Sums to 10 – Print out 2 copies of the special dice, roll and record each one, then use the mat to add them up
6) Santa Pre-writing Tracing Strips – 9 different strips included
7) Santa Rhyming Bingo – Find rhyming words for -at, -am, -ug, -ig and -ap word families on the bingo card. 4 different cards included.
8) Santa’s List Pick and Tick Letters – Prepare the letter cards and place them in a bag or sensory bin then practice letter recognition as the child ticks them off Santa’s list. Upper and lowercase letters included.
9) Christmas Gift Sight Word Tagging – Match up the sight word-labeled gifts and tags. 40 Pre-primer words included.
10) Elf Alphabet Fine Motor Letter Mats – Form the letter using playdough or other materials you choose then practice writing out the uppercase letters.
Books About Christmas That We Love:
Other Free Christmas Printables You’ll Love:
1) Christmas Printable Worksheet Pack – 50 pages of worksheets for mastering the alphabet, early math skills and more!
2) Christmas I Spy – This Christmas-themed I Spy is perfect for keeping little ones busy during the holidays.
3) Santa Land Spot the Difference – This game of visual discrimination will keep your kids busy for a while! Find the 10 differences between these 2 pictures of Santa Land.
4) Build A Number Santa – Preschool and kindergarten kids will match the number to the correct number word, tally mark and domino to form a Santa Claus in this fun printable Christmas activity.
5) Gingerbread Number Puzzle Strips – Set of 3 differentiated gingerbread-themed number puzzles including one with dice representation.
Educational Tools For Your Classroom:
Browse My Most Popular Math Printables:
1) Parking Cars Tracing Lines – More than 10 different tracing line patterns to choose from, all of which help with pencil control.
2) Scarecrow Arrange By Size – 3 different scarecrow-themed image sets that they will arrange from smallest to biggest.
3) Bumblebee Addition Game – Solve the sum and help the bee land on the correct flower!
4) Farm Shapes Mats – Use playdough, pompoms, stickers etc to learn 2D shapes.
5) Popsicle Stick Number Formation – Kids will love forming the numbers 1 to 10 when ice cream and popsicles are involved!
8) Counting Colorful Bugs – This printable book will help kids count to 10 while also learning about color words.
9) Humpty Dumpty Numbers – In this printable game, your students will practice number recognition using 1 dice or simple addition when using 2 dice.
10) Build A Number Santa – Match the number to the correct number word, tally mark and domino to form a Santa Claus
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