Home/Resources/Tracing Shapes

Tracing Shapes

Read more about helping young children with learning to draw geometric figures. Here is a math activity to do with children.

Activity 22: Tracing Shapes


Child-safe plate, cookie sheet, or tray; 1 cup rice or cornmeal.

Try It Out:

  1. Place a tray with rice or cornmeal in front of your child.
  2. Say, “Let’s play the tracing game.”
  3. Using your pointer finger to trace a simple shape in the tray, say, “I’m making a circle with one line,” or “I’m making a square with four lines—1, 2, 3, 4.” Start with circles and squares.
  4. Smooth out the rice or cornmeal. Then say, “Now it’s your turn to play.”
  5. If your child can trace circles and squares, introduce triangles and then rectangles.

Making the Most of This Activity:

Try this activity outside in a sandbox or by using finger paints and paper.


Was your child able to trace circles, squares, and triangles? Was he able to count the lines making up the sides of a square or triangle?


American Institute for Research

Ready for more activities?


Related Resources


We need your support now more than ever to ensure all babies have access to the quality care, services and support they need to thrive.