With the introduction of the new National Curriculum in 2014 geometry has been pushed to the side lines in the Primary Maths Scheme of Work, with an emphasis instead on number, calculation and fractions.

In Year 1, at the age of 5 or 6, children are expected to recognise and name common 2d shapes and common 3d shapes. By Year 4, at the age of 8 or 9, children are expected to have remembered all those names, whilst also understand what horizontal, vertical, parallel and perpendicular lines are, and then use these terms to help them recognise and name the different kinds of triangles and quadrilaterals. By Year 6, at the age of 10 or 11, children are expected to remember all those names and terms, whilst also understand how to identify if a shape if irregular or regular, how to find missing angles and lengths in different triangles, quadrilaterals and polygons, and how to find the radius, diameter and circumference of circles.

In my experience as a Key Stage 2 teacher, when teaching geometry (once squeezed into our already busy Maths times tables,) the majority of children struggle to simply remember the names of all 2d and 3d shapes, let alone how to recognise whether shapes are irregular or regular, or if a four sided shape is a trapezium or rhombus and then explain how they know that.

Shape Land books have been written and designed to help children learn ways to recognise and remember the names of different 2d shapes. Little tricks, catchy names and the required mathematical terminology work together to help children visualise and memorize what can otherwise be a very dry and boring topic. These books can be used across the Key Stages as a teaching aid, or at home. Visiting these books regularly with your children will help cement the stories in their memories and help them as they progress through Primary school.

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