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A Geometry Lesson using Tangrams




3, 4  

Dana Prussman
Gelin Rice

Topic: Tangrams and Geometry

Grade Level: 3 – 4

Name of Activity: A Tangram Folklore

Materials Needed: “Grandfather Tang’s Story” by Ann Tompert

Foam board cut into the seven tangram pieces

Description of Activity:

Introduce students to tangrams by explaining the Ancient Chinese puzzle, and its history in the Chinese culture. It is sometimes referred to as “seven pieces of cleverness.” Begin reading “Grandfather Tang’s Story. As the animals change throughout the story, the students will create the animals using all 7 tangram pieces. A model will be provided by the teacher in order for the students to imitate. The students will manipulate the pieces recognizing how each geometric shape fits together to form the animals. Make sure to give students adequate time between readings to pattern each animal.


– After reading the story to them, have students create their own animals using the tangram pieces, and they could even create their own story to go along with their tangram animals.

– Students can manipulate the pieces finding ways to create a square using 1,2,3 and all 7 of the pieces.

– Students could create the animals in the story on their own instead of patterning the teachers model while the story is being read.

This activity can be adapted for all grade levels

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