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Lesson Plan

Going on a Shape Hunt: Integrating Math and Literacy

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Grades K – 2
Lesson Plan Type Standard Lesson
Estimated Time Three 40- to 60-minute sessions
Lesson Author

Lisa Cranston

Lisa Cranston

Comber, Ontario


International Literacy Association



Featured Resources

From Theory to Practice



Integrating mathematics and literacy allows students to develop an understanding of the place of mathematics in their world. Students are introduced to the idea of shapes through a read-aloud session with an appropriate book. They then use models to learn the names of shapes, work together and individually to locate shapes in their real-world environment, practice spelling out the names of shapes they locate, and reflect in writing on the process. This lesson provides opportunities to engage students using many different learning modalities.

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Shape Hunt Reflection Sheet: Have your students use this handout after their shape hunt to reflect upon what they found.

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Hunsader, P.D. (2004). Mathematics trade books: Establishing their value and assessing their quality. The Reading Teacher, 57(7), 618629.

  • Literacy and mathematics require development of many of the same skills, including pattern recognition, classifying, organizing thoughts, and solving problems.

  • Literature can provide a means for mathematics and literacy skills to develop simultaneously as students read, write, listen, and talk about math.

  • Engagement with literature allows students to connect the abstract language of mathematics to their personal world in a natural way.


Elliott, P.C. (Ed.). (1996). Communication in mathematics: K12 and beyond. Reston, VA: National Council of Teachers of Mathematics.


Hellwig, S., Monroe, E.E., & Jacobs, J.S. (2000). Making informed choices: Selecting children's trade books for mathematics instruction. Teaching Children Mathematics, 7, 138143.

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