Understanding Attributes!


The Everyday Math Lesson today was focusing on attributes. I did not particularly like the way the lesson introduced attributes of shapes so a adapted the lesson to best meet my students!

Objective: Identifying similar and different attributes of shapes.


-Put the word attribute on the board and ask the children if they now what it means (let them take some guesses).

-Pick several children to come to the front of the class with all the same hair color. Tell the children that these students all have a same “attribute!” Have the children try to identify the attribute.

-Once the attribute is identified have the children discuss what an attribute is!


-Have several other children come up with similar attributes and continue to have the children identify the common attributes. The children will notice that some people have more than one similar attribute.

-Explain that attributes in people are called traits but in math we can see attributes when sorting things.

-Spilt the children into groups and give them different manipulatives to sort such as shells, buttons, beads, shapes, and animals. After about 3 minutes of sorting have the children stop and share how they sorted.

-Now ask the children to sort a new way.

-Let the children switch and sort different manipulatives making sure each time they stop and talk about their sorting.


-Ask the children to define attributes. Give a child a chance to sort children in the class by similar attributes and have the class guess. Tomorrow they will be identifying similar attributes of 3-dimensional shapes.

Reflection: The children seemed to really grasp the concept of attributes especially through their sorting. They kept trying to sort them differently each time with a deeper understanding of attributes. It was definitely a lesson I would use again!

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