Puzzle centers can be difficult for pre-K as the young ones are still learning to voice their ideas and share materials. This routinely makes the tech-based center a solo endeavor. The dual-touch feature in RelationShapes finally presents a way for two kids to work on the same device. Teachers can track completed levels and pair students working on the same challenge. Not only can puzzlers share ideas, but they can manipulate shapes on the screen together, creating a truly collaborative exercise.
After finishing their Picture It designs, images can be saved to the gallery, where each student can view their work. Students can count them up to keep track of the number of puzzles that have been solved. Teachers will want to print these screenshots for bulletin boards, letters home, and other fun incentive ideas -- or hand them out to challenge other kids to match their peer's unique designs.
Extension lesson plans are also available to continue the experience off the screen. Lessons include materials lists, lesson ideas, and printable pages.Continue reading Show less
RelationShapes gives kids a chance to build their visual-spatial awareness and practice their fine-motor skills with puzzles and free-play activities. Using the app is simple, perfect for kids to begin honing their skills. A puzzle begins with a guide, explaining the goal, while visual cues help along the way. Each side of the split-screen contains basic shapes. The challenge is to alter the arrangement of the shapes so that each side is identical. The first few levels in the Match It section each introduce simple transformations -- slides, turns, and scaling. After adding in different types of triangles, the last few levels are solved through using those triangles and other shapes to construct complex polygons.
Completing a puzzle opens the next section, Picture It. The same shapes are presented with various animated accessories like smiling mouths, waving hands, and fun backgrounds. New accessories are added after each completed puzzle, keeping the free play fun and exciting. Picture It designs are saved to a gallery and can be enjoyed by both kids and grown-ups.
Traditional visual-spatial activities are hands-on, and, unless completed in a small group or one-on-one, they don't lend themselves to the kind of immediate feedback that's so important. The RelationShapes app gives students the feedback right away, along with incentives that keep them working to get it right. Solutions to Match It puzzles are open-ended, so students can change either side of the split-screen and manipulate pieces any way they like, which encourages unique problem-solving strategies.
Picture It activities aren't just the incentive for completing a puzzle; free play is just as important as the structured activities. Kids change and create their own designs and add additional accessories to energize their creativity. Direct access to Picture It would be nice, however, for creative lesson ideas.
Key Standards Supported
Describe objects in the environment using names of shapes, and describe the relative positions of these objects using terms such as above, below, beside, in front of, behind, and next to.
Correctly name shapes regardless of their orientations or overall size.
Identify shapes as two-dimensional (lying in a plane, “flat”) or three- dimensional (“solid”).
Analyze and compare two- and three-dimensional shapes, in different sizes and orientations, using informal language to describe their similarities, differences, parts (e.g., number of sides and vertices/“corners”) and other attributes (e.g., having sides of equal length).
Model shapes in the world by building shapes from components (e.g., sticks and clay balls) and drawing shapes.
Compose simple shapes to form larger shapes. For example, “Can you join these two triangles with full sides touching to make a rectangle?”
Distinguish between defining attributes (e.g., triangles are closed and three-sided) versus non-defining attributes (e.g., color, orientation, overall size); build and draw shapes to possess defining attributes.
Compose two-dimensional shapes (rectangles, squares, trapezoids, triangles, half-circles, and quarter-circles) or three-dimensional shapes (cubes, right rectangular prisms, right circular cones, and right circular cylinders) to create a composite shape, and compose new shapes from the composite shape.4
Partition circles and rectangles into two and four equal shares, describe the shares using the words halves, fourths, and quarters, and use the phrases half of, fourth of, and quarter of. Describe the whole as two of, or four of the shares. Understand for these examples that decomposing into more equal shares creates smaller shares.
Recognize and draw shapes having specified attributes, such as a given number of angles or a given number of equal faces.5 Identify triangles, quadrilaterals, pentagons, hexagons, and cubes.
Partition a rectangle into rows and columns of same-size squares and count to find the total number of them.
Partition circles and rectangles into two, three, or four equal shares, describe the shares using the words halves, thirds, half of, a third of, etc., and describe the whole as two halves, three thirds, four fourths. Recognize that equal shares of identical wholes need not have the same shape.
Understand that shapes in different categories (e.g., rhombuses, rectangles, and others) may share attributes (e.g., having four sides), and that the shared attributes can define a larger category (e.g., quadrilaterals). Recognize rhombuses, rectangles, and squares as examples of quadrilaterals, and draw examples of quadrilaterals that do not belong to any of these subcategories.
Partition shapes into parts with equal areas. Express the area of each part as a unit fraction of the whole. For example, partition a shape into 4 parts with equal area, and describe the area of each part as 1/4 of the area of the shape.
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