Falwell, Cathryn. Shape Capers. Book Review.

Click here to buy Shape Capers

This book is an exploration of shapes, specifically circle, square, triangle, semicircle, and rectangle. In order for the child to genuinely connect with this book, I would strongly recommend that they have several copies of each of these shapes to play with. When the children in the text explore circles, the child can explore them as well. He or she can imitate the structures being built in the narration. After each shape is individually explored, all of them are put together to make a scooter, race car, rocket ship, dragon, and boat. It would be well advised to have enough shapes for the child to imitate these more complex structures.

One of the things I really liked about this book was that the children were of mixed races. The shapes were brightly colored and the children manipulating them wore patterned (with the shapes explored in the book ) black and white clothing. However the patterns were so vivid and intriguing that I found my eyes drawn much more to the children than the shapes. It was as though they were both fighting for my attention.

This would be an excellent book for a teacher or parent to use when helping a child to recognize and explore basic geometric shapes. In the second last page, children are told to look for shapes in a double-page spread featuring children at a party. An adult could extend this into the actual room in which the child is reading. The last page is an encouragement for the child to use scrap papers and create figures made from the shapes they have learned.

This book would be a valuable addition to a primary classroom.

Well recommended.


Bonnie Ferrante: Books For All Ages


One thought on “Falwell, Cathryn. Shape Capers. Book Review.

  1. Good point about the child having physical models of the shapes the book mentions.
    It is possible to buy sets of small plastic shapes – too small for safety with pre-schoolers (oral explorers!).
    A handyman hobbyist could create them from two-ply wood and a jig-saw, in different sizes. As one who had such sets, I recommend that different colours are used no matter what shape. I.e. Don’t have all circles the same colour, all triangles the same colour, etc. Let the shapes be the focus not the colours.
    And remember, there are more than one basic triangle: scalene, isosceles and equilateral.


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