Math Helping Your Five-Year-Old Develop Important Spatial Skills

Spatial reasoning connects math to the physical world and includes skills like reading maps, understanding symmetry and building 3D objects. Research indicates that spatial reasoning skills correlate to early achievement in mathematics and "strongly predict" who will pursue STEM careers later in life. At age five, your child is ready for more spatial challenges — navigating, exploring and building. And you can help them grow with fun activities at home!

Simple activities to help your child strengthen spatial sense:

Build a Model

Use recycled bottles, cans and boxes to create a three-dimensional model of where you live. It could be a model of one room, your whole house, your street or your whole neighborhood. This activity connects a child's personal world with spatial relations.

Peg + Cat Tree Problem

Peg and Cat's spirited and playful antics engage children in learning math concepts while having an awesome time! This app offers a series of games designed to help your child practice creative problem-solving and height comparison skills.

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Make a Symmetrical Painting

Fold a piece of paper in half and have your child paint on one side only. While the paint is still wet, fold the paper fully in half again so that the wet side touches the dry side. When you unfold it, you'll discover that you created a symmetrical painting!

Snowflake Match

Your child can learn about shape symmetry in this game of matching snowflake halves.

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Practice Rights and Lefts

Have your child practice his rights and lefts by dancing to the Hokey Pokey. If he has not learned to
distinguish his right from his left yet, tie a piece of yarn around his right hand so he'll have a visual reminder.

Blown Away!

Peg was having fun in her yard until the wind scattered all of her things. Your child can practice counting and spatial language skills by following directions to help Peg find her hat, uke and other items in this seek and find printable.

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Create an Obstacle Course

Using chairs, tables, pillows and anything else you have, create an indoor obstacle course! Use spatial words such as "over," "under," "through" and "around" to explain the route. You will help your child learn how to navigate through space while increasing their spatial vocabulary.


Your child can practice prediction, visual, and spatial skills by stacking and removing crates to help George use his pogo stick to collect hats, bags, gifts, and other items.

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Go on a Treasure Hunt

Making and following a treasure map based on your living room or backyard will help your child translate a two-dimensional bird’s-eye view into the three-dimensional real world. Hide an object and mark it on the map with a red X for your child to hunt down. Then have your child draw a map and hide an object for you to find!

Explore How Things Fit Together

The Cat in the Hat needs to find his way to Thing 1 and Thing 2. Your child can help the Cat find his way by creating a path of pasta that goes straight, right or left as needed.

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Help Your Child Learn to Love Math with Peg + Cat

Through engaging stories and comedy, Peg + Cat encourages your child to see math as exciting, accessible, and fun. The show teaches measurement, shapes and patterns, and problem-solving skills that children can use in their everyday lives.

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Activity Finder: Learn With Your Five-Year-Old

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