Shapes in Architecture

Bright colored townhouses with geometric shapes

This activity promotes development and learning by encouraging children to observe, explore, and describe their environment to gain an understanding of people, places, and things.

Materials Needed:

  • Notebook
  • Writing tool

Participants: This activity is intended for adult/child interaction.


  1. Step 1: Watch a brief video from PBS Learning Media on organic and geometric shapes in architecture.
  2. Step 2: Take a drive or walk through your community. Can you find examples of geometric or organic architecture? Help your child write down the types of shapes you see. Which are more common, geometric, or organic shapes?
  3. Step 3: Depending on your child’s interest, discuss and design some buildings in the notebook or on blueprint paper. How do different shapes change a building’s feeling, purpose, or use? What kind of building would your child like to create? What would it be for? What problems could it solve? Help your child write notes about the buildings or create a story.

Learn More: Older children can dive deeper into learning about architecture. Check out the resources on Frank Lloyd Wright, for example, at the Smithsonian Learning Lab. Your child might be inspired to know that Wright designed a home over a waterfall or that he created buildings that harmonized with nature. Maybe your child will want to design furniture after seeing Wright’s work.

Bright Horizons
About the Author
Bright Horizons
Bright Horizons
In 1986, our founders saw that child care was an enormous obstacle for working parents. On-site centers became one way we responded to help employees – and organizations -- work better. Today we offer child care, elder care, and help for education and careers -- tools used by more than 1,000 of the world’s top employers and that power many of the world's best brands
Bright colored townhouses with geometric shapes