|

Expert Iconexpert advice MORE

Spatial Reasoning

Education Expert Advice from Peggy Gisler, Ed.S. and Marge Eberts, Ed.S.

Q: My daughter needs improvement in spatial reasoning. I was told to have her engage in manipulative projects and activities, tasks that would require spatial reasoning. How can I help her with this?

A: Improving your daughter's spatial reasoning skills should be a thoroughly pleasant task that will let her have a lot of fun. Good skills in this area are very important, as they are essential for a student to shine in math, science, and geography.

Like other skills, children's spatial reasoning skills develop over time with plenty of practice. Begin by helping your child gain an awareness of shapes and how they relate to each other through the following manipulative activities:

  • Encourage your child to do jigsaw puzzles.
  • Make a simple construction using ten or more building blocks. Then, have your child copy it block by block. Increase the number of blocks and complexity of the construction, as she becomes more skilled.
  • Turn your daughter into a builder. Have her use Lincoln Logs®, Legos®, and Tinker Toys® to construct houses, barns, skyscrapers, castles, and garages. Encourage her to use her imagination to construct places associated with Harry Potter, Winnie the Pooh, and other literary favorites.
  • Introduce your daughter to the joys of making models by choosing age-appropriate models for her to build.
  • Have your daughter play the game Jenga® that has children remove individual blocks until a construction collapses.
  • Give your daughter an opportunity to work with tangrams. These are ancient Chinese puzzles in which simple geometric shapes are arranged to fill an uncommon space.

As your daughter's spatial reasoning skills grow, she can move on to drawing maps, using a compass, and writing directions. Also, encourage her to talk about routes to different places and the meaning of a variety of diagrams.

More on: Expert Advice

Peggy Gisler and Marge Eberts are experienced teachers who have more than 60 educational publications to their credit. They began writing books together in 1979. Careers for Bookworms was a Book-of-the-Month Club paperback selection, and Pancakes, Crackers, and Pizza received recognition from the Children's Reading Roundtable. Gisler and Eberts taught in classrooms from kindergarten through graduate school. Both have been supervisors at the Butler University Reading Center.


Please note: This "Expert Advice" area of FamilyEducation.com should be used for general information purposes only. Advice given here is not intended to provide a basis for action in particular circumstances without consideration by a competent professional. Before using this Expert Advice area, please review our General and Medical Disclaimers.

stay connected

Sign up for our free email newsletters and receive the latest advice and information on all things parenting.

Enter your email address to sign up or manage your account.

Facebook icon Twitter icon Follow Us on Pinterest

editor’s picks

highlights

3 Fun Thanksgiving Games for Kids
Looking for some great Thanksgiving games to play with your kids? Print our free Pin the Feathers on the Turkey game, Pin the Hat on the Pilgrim game, and Thanksgiving Parade Bingo game for loads of laughs this Turkey Day!

Kindergarten Readiness App Wins Gold
Our Kindergarten Readiness app won the Gold Award of Excellence in the educational category at the 2014 Communicator Awards. This valuable checklist comes with games and activities to help your child practice the essential skills she needs for kindergarten. Download the Kindergarten Readiness app today!

Top Family Movies in Theaters for the Holidays
Taking the kids to the movies is a special family treat for the holidays! Don't miss 2014's best family films in theaters from Thanksgiving through Christmas.

Find Today's Newest & Best Children's Books!
Looking for newly released books for your child? Try our new Book Finder tool to search for new books by age, type, and theme, and create reading lists for kids!