Easy Activities to Learn Shapes before 3 years old

Learning shapes is a skill that can be taught starting at two years old.  Before my son hit this milestone, I gathered a few ideas on Pinterest and now that he is two we are ready to try them!  I found the coolest activities to learn shapes and now you can try them too.

if you are looking for fun ways to learn shapes then take note because these are a  lot of fun!l to get started into learning shapes.

I created my own activities to learn shapes (and printables too).

If interactive sheets are more your thing because of their no-material and no set up needed then check out the Two Year Old Binder as we have a full section dedicated to the shapes that two-year-olds should learn. There is also an advance section for those super-smart kids that learn the basic shapes fast and need a bigger challenge.

Learn Shapes with Templates

This is a free printable to be used to create super fun activities, coloring projects, and art activities to learn shapes. Get your free shapes template here

Learn Shapes

Here is a list of my favorite activities to do with my son, to encourage him in his learning process about shapes.

Love an idea? Save it on your Pinterest folder or bookmark this page to keep these ideas handy! Take notes and get ready to be amazed by these crazy, cool, and colorful ideas.


Who doesn´t love crabs? They are cute, tiny, and funny. Like the general idea of doing a DIY with your kids.

What I love the most is that this craft is made up of 3 circles. A perfect activity to practice this shape.

Step by step:

1.- Cut out a medium cardboard red circle. Fold it in half. Place it in the middle of the blue cardboard (with the size of a regular paper).

2.- Cut out four small cardboard red circles. Fold it in half and place them on top of the medium red half you already.

3.- Make sure you place the small carboard in a pair, above the rest.

4.- Leave a small space between them so you can put the little funny eyes on it.

5.- Draw with your kids a pair of cute round eyes for your little crab.

6.- Draw some black lines – as the legs – to connect the circles, as the video shows.

Vía: Pinterest


What we like the most about rainbows is that they are full of color and magic, and also is a way to introduce  your toddler to make something out of  rectangles. Making  a DIY Rainbow is easy and also a great idea to practice scissor skills.

Step by step:

1.- Cut out 7 strips of paper in rectangle shape– from the largest to the shortest – in different colors. Make sure you use the same colors of a rainbow: red, orange, yellow, green, light blue, dark blue and purple.

2.- Take them all and staple the end of each strip together – both sides – and you´ll get a little paper arch.

3.- Cut out three clouds and place them on a pink carboard, with the size of a regular paper.

4.- Open the arch and place it between the clouds.

5.- Add some cotton on top of the paper clouds.

6.- Cut out the head of some q-tips and place them under the clouds (to remake the idea of the rain).

Vía Pinterest


 It´s very important for your toddler learn and identify the different type of shapes. This free printable concert the carrots into different shapes and each rabbit had a shape next to it. The goal? Match the right shape to the right carrot.

This is a great activity to do during Easter to practice all shapes.  

Step by step:

1.- Get the free printout and make 8 paper cards.

2.- Cut out the carrot shapes and each card.

3.- Laminate to protect the cards and pieces

4.- Play with your kid how to match each shape with the correct card.

Vía: Totshooling


 This is a 2D Shape sorting activity for toddlers, to prepare them for pre-k, kindergarten. This activity will help them to practice both shape recognition and classification.

Step by step:

1.- Make different cards with a shape on top.

2.- Put the name of the shape.

3.- Add three small circles under the name and shape, so your kid can place each laminated tab with the draw of objects that has the same shape the card shows.

4.- The general idea is that you toddler can be able to identify and put in the correct card each laminated tab.

2 Year Old Learning Binder


Do you know the little sticks that comes from ice cream palettes? They can often be found in the craft section at your local store or dollar shop. Picture this: what if I tell you can use those sticks to play and teach your kid about shapes?

This activity was initially created for something else, create houses or just random objects. My son created a triangle and started framing his face like he was looking out from a special window. I took his lead and then we tried to create all types of shapes. I loved this activity and we had so much fun pretending it was a camera or a window and it gave him tons of practice to recognize each shape.

Step by step: 

1.- Take a few color craft sticks (we used the jumbo colored ones) if you don’t find the colored ones you can paint them  with different color paint as a project together.

2.- Add velcro dots on the tip of each stick. (Ours are 22mm just the exact width of the stick.)

3 – We added a soft Velcro dot on one end and a rough one on the other. In some cases I had to add Velcro dots on each side of the stick in order to connect the sticks for some larger shapes.

3.- Start creating a triangle and then a square, then see what other shapes you can recreate. Maybe a diamond? A pentagon?


 One thing I’d for a child to recognize a shape, another is for them to recognize things that have that same shape. This is an activity that  practices on just that.  It is an activity made for kids who need a little more help recognizing and sorting shapes. (The Two year old binder has 5 pages included of this activities with a total of 25 shapes you can use!)

 Step by step:

1.- Make a medium laminated card with shape and put the name under.

2.- Make more laminated small cards with general objects your toddler sees daily that has the same shape of the ones you laminated.

3.- Ask your toddler to place each card – object under the right shape card.

Vía: Pinterest

Felt Shapes Puzzle 

 Felt crafts had been very popular for a while now. This DIY matching game is great to work on shape recognition. Felt sheets are very affordable and easy to cut. As an alternative you can find craft foam or toys already in different shapes. All you need is the cardboard mat to create the puzzle board.

Step by step:

1.- Draw each shape in a big cardboard or leather cover.

2.- Add a small piece of elastic bandage.

3.- Cut out small pieces of each shape in laminated cards.

4.- Encourage your toddler to place each shape in the right place.

Vía: Paper Ideas


Playdoh is fun an easy way to play and teach your toddler almost everything. And they are perfect in the learning process of shapes. Use your favorite homemade playdough recipe or store brought and work together on these mats.
Two year old toddlers will need help creating the shapes but they can help rolling the playdough and identifying the shapes. A little help is ok!  Preschoolers could do the shapes by themselves

Step by step:

1.- on a paper, draw each shape. (Or use our shape templates available for free) 

2.- Encourage you toddler to build each shape by making rolls or snakes shaped playdough.

3- Place the playdough over the edge of each shape

3.- Use a different color for each shape at the beginning to help differentiating each shape.

Vía: Royal Baloo


The hungry shape monster is a fun game for toddlers and preschool aged kids. They´ll learn how to recognize, name and sort 2D shapes in a verry funny and simple way.

Step by step:

1.- Use pieces of cardboard to cut out Different shapes.
2 –  Use different colors to paint and then add googly eyes to create a big monster shape.

2.- Create small tokens of each shape in different colors – this will be the food each monster eats  – so your toddler can take and put inside of the right monster’s mouth!

(Target sells mini erasers in each shape, they are great for this activity)

Vía: The imagination Tree


 Teaching kids about shapes can be done in different type of game. Games that use gross motor skills are always a favorite for toddlers. They love to move so anything that challenges this is a win for them!

Make large shapes in the floor and have them jump in and out of each shape. “Jumó inside the circle” then , use the same large shapes created to do a sorting activity.

Step by step:

1.- Using painter´s tape, make the form of each shape on the floor of your living room or playroom.

2- ask your child to jump in and out of each shape.

3- when tired…Gather random toys or objects around the house that are the form of these shapes and place them in a basket.

4- Show your kid the shape of each object and help (him – her) recognize that in the big shape you created using the painter´s tape.

4.- Encourage him to place some objects in the right big shape on the floor.

Vía: Busy Toddler


This is a very fun a great way to learn shapes through touch. Each toddler has a different learning process, so we need to make sure to cover the right one for our little one. Using sensory bins are one of my favorite activities to learn anything.

Step by step.

1.- On a big bowl full of rice, hide the puzzle shape pieces.

2.- Next to the bowl, put the puzzle board so your toddler can match each piece with it as he/she finds it.

3.- Let (him) (her) touch each shape, recognize it and learn by having fun.

Vía: Fun with Mama


Try this shape matching activity using post- it notes. A quick and easy way your toddler can play and learn.

Step by step.

1.- Draw different shapes using a marker in a big paper and attach this to the wall at eye level.

2.- The draw in post it notes different shapes to match what you have drawn in the board.

3.- Let your toddler place each post it note in the right shape on the board.

Vía: Busy Toddler


From our zoo week we incorporated shapes into our theme. Using our shape template we aligned the animals around each shape. It was a simple activity yet it gave us the opportunity to present new more challenging shapes.

Don’t forget to download your shape template, seriously there are so many fun things you can do with them!

So, are you ready to have fun and learn more about shapes in an easy way with your toddler? I think is just matter of time and creativity to do all this activities. If you enjoyed this article, please take a look of the Love 2 Learn Curriculum and learning Binder I´ve designed specially for this stage of your toddler´s learning process. Click here to read more about it. The curriculum incorporates shapes into each weekly theme so it goes with your child’s interest.