Understanding and describing shapes and space is one of the two critical areas of Kindergarten mathematics. Students develop geometric concepts and spatial reasoning from experience with two perspectives on space: the shapes of objects and the relative positions of objects.

In the domain of shape, students learn to match two-dimensional shapes even when the shapes have different orientations. They learn to name shapes such as circles, triangles, and squares, whose names occur in everyday language, and distinguish them from non-examples of these categories, often based initially on visual models. Students also begin to name and describe three-dimensional shapes with mathematical vocabulary, such as “sphere,” “cube,” “cylinder,” and “cone.” They identify faces of three-dimensional shapes as two-dimensional geometric figures and explicitly identify shapes as two-dimensional (“flat” or lying in a plane) or three-dimensional.

A second important area for kindergartners is the composition of geometric figures. Students not only build shapes from components, but also compose shapes to build pictures and designs.

Finally, in the domain of spatial reasoning, students discuss not only shape and orientation, but also the relative positions of objects, using terms such as “above,” “below,” “next to,” “behind,” “in front of,” and “beside.” They use these spatial reasoning competencies, along with their growing knowledge of three-dimensional shapes and their ability to compose them, to model objects in their environment.

Calculation Method for Domains

Domains are larger groups of related standards. The Domain Grade is a calculation of all the related standards. Click on the standard name below each Domain to access the learning targets and rubrics/ proficiency scales for individual standards within the domain.