Can It! (Cylinders)

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SWBAT identify and describe a cylinder by its attributes.

Big Idea

Kindergarteners love to identify shapes in their environment. In order to effectively do that, they must be able to recognize different shapes by their specific attributes. In this lesson kindergartners learn about the attributes of a cylinder.

Daily Calendar & Counting Review

20 minutes

Each day we begin our math block with an interactive online calendar followed by counting songs and videos.

Calendar Time:

We do calendar on Starfall every afternoon.  This website has free reading and math resources for primary teachers. It also has a  “more” option that requires paying a yearly fee. The calendar use is free. A detailed description of Daily Calendar math is included in the resources.

Counting with online sources: Today we did counting practice to reinforce the counting skills. We watched two to three number recognition 0-10 videos (one to two minutes each) because some of my students students were still struggling with identifying numbers correctly in random order. We watched "Shawn the Train" and counted objects with him to refresh our memories on how to count objects to ten and to reinforce one to one counting. Since we have started the second quarter of the school year, we added to today's counting practice: counting to 20 forward and back, counting by tens to 100 and counting to 100 by ones to get a jump on our end of the year goals.

Direct Instruction

15 minutes

I began the lesson by reviewing our shapes chart. We reviewed the names and attributes of all the shapes already listed. Then I introduced the next 3D shape, the cylinder.

Note: The goal of this lesson is to get students using geometric vocabulary, identifying the given shape and describing the shapes attributes. The use of complete sentences and appropriate vocabulary is stressed.

Me (holding up a plastic cylinder): Does anyone know what we call this shape?

Students: Several kids yelled out, "Cylinder!" (This is a strong example of why we sing along to the 3D shapes video during calendar time even though the kids hadn't been formally introduced to them yet.) Note: A couple of students yell, "a circle!" I deliberately continue with the lesson because it should eliminate the confusion by the closure, rather than stop the lesson.

Me: Awesome! Using your eyes (linking to the five senses in science), I want you to think about what a cylinder looks like. I give approximately 20 seconds wait time. "If I call on you, I would like you to tell me what you notice about this cylinder in a complete sentence using the words, 'The cylinder has...'" (This supports English language development.) (I deliberately use the word cylinder repeatedly to embed the name and shape recognition into their minds)

Students (names randomly picked one at a time from Popsicle sticks in a jar).

Student 1: The cylinder has circles.

Me: Can you explain how it has circles? (probing questions)

Student 1: It has a circle on the top and bottom. (students actual words).

Me: Good observation. The "circles" on the cylinder are called faces.

A random student yells out: Hey that's just like a cube and squares! (connection to prior learning)

Me: That's right!

Making the poster: Everyone say "A cylinder has two circle faces." Students repeat. I draw a cylinder on our chart paper and write 2 circle faces under it.

Me: I draw another name stick. "What else can you tell me about this shape?"

Student 2: It's can roll.

Me: Can you say that again, but start your sentence with, "The cylinder can..." (This supports English language development)

Student 2: The cylinder can roll.

Me: How do we know it can roll? (choose another stick)

Student 3: The cylinder can roll because it has a round body.

Me: Can you roll this cylinder on the table for us? (Student rolls it) We write "can roll" on our poster

Me: Is there anything else you can say about this cylinder? (I don't pick a stick this time because the most obvious attributes have already been stated. I pick a raised hand)

Student 4: The cylinder can slide.

Me: Another good observation! How did you know that?

Student 4: It's flat on the bottom and my brother slides me cans on our table in the kitchen.

Me: Let's count the edges (we count 12 edges together and I write it on the poster and we say, "The cube has 12 edges).

Once the kids have provided enough information on the cylinder, we add it to our shapes poster.

Note: It is important that the kids hear and use the geometric vocabulary repeatedly throughout the lesson. By the end of this experience, most of the students in the class should be able to identify and name a cylinder and give at least one attribute of the shape using appropriate mathematical language.

Management Tip: To call on students, I pull names on popsicle sticks that are housed in a plastic jar. This prevents me from sub-consciously choosing the same students repeatedly or calling on too many girls versus boys and vice versa.

The Hunt Begins!

10 minutes

We watch and sing our favorite 3D song by Harry Kindergarten:

I tell the kids we are going for a cylinder hunt around the room. It is important for young learners to explore their environment and learn to

As we prepare for our cylinder hunt I give the following rules:

Walking only while hunting for cylinders

Hands to yourself - no "stealing" cylinders from each other

Quiet voices

Keep a Level 3 behavior (which means they are making good decisions and participating)

Game directions:

Safely look for objects (I place objects around the room before the math lesson no glass or sharp edged. I collect them from science kits, social studies materials, math tubs, and home .

I tell the kids: Collect the objects that are shaped like cylinders and we will share what you find in a few minutes.

One student told the class it was like hunting for Easter eggs, except we are looking for cylinders. She then asked me for my travel coffee mug!

I set the timer for three minutes. When the timer goes off the kids must return to the floor with their cylinders.


10 minutes

We gather on the floor and I explain to the kids that they will share each item they found and prove to the class that it is a cylinder by showing that the object has all the attributes of a cylinder (as best as they can).

We share our objects by taking turns standing up in front of the class and telling about each thing we found. We say what it is, prove it's a cylinder by showing the faces and holding it around the outside. Some of the kids even roll the object to prove it's a cylinder.

I always choose a strong mathematical thinker to go first after I model what I want them to be able to do. This way the kids see a strong example of what I am looking for. The student I chose not only showed the physical attributes, but she even made the can roll and slide!