Shape - Definition with Examples
In geometry, a shape can be defined as the form of an object or its outline, outer boundary or outer surface.
Everything we see in the world around us has a shape. We can find different basic shapes such as the two-dimensional square, rectangle, and oval or the three-dimensional rectangular prism, cylinder, and sphere in the objects we see around us. These geometric shapes appear in objects we see as credit cards, bills and coins, finger rings, photo frames, dart boards, huts, windows, magician’s wands, tall buildings, flower pots, toy trains, and balloons.
Different Types of Shapes
Shapes can be classified into open and closed shapes.
Closed geometric shapes can further be put into two broad categories, namely two-dimensional and three-dimensional shapes.
Here’s a list of 2-D or two-dimensional shapes with their names and pictures:
Name of the shape : | Picture of the shape : |
Circle | |
Semi - circle | |
Oval | |
Triangle | |
Square | |
Rectangle | |
Parallelogram | |
Rhombus | |
Trapezium | |
Kite | |
Pentagon | |
Hexagon | |
Heptagon | |
Octagon | |
Nonagon | |
Decagon |
Here’s a list of 3-D or three-dimensional shapes with their names and pictures:
Name of the shape : | Picture of the shape : |
Sphere | |
Cube | |
Cuboid or Rectangular Prism | |
Cone | |
Cylinder |
The color, overall size, and orientation, called the non-defining attributes of a two-dimensional or three-dimensional shape, do not define or affect the shape in any way. These attributes can change without any effect on the shape.
On the other hand, defining attributes such as the number of sides (parallel or non-parallel, straight or curved), vertices, edges and faces of a shape, whether the shape is open or closed, and the angle measures determine the shape of a two-dimensional or three-dimensional object. Any change in these defining attributes will change the shape.
A triangle is a 3-sided closed shape and a square is a 4 equally-sided closed shape.
One similarity between circles and squares is that both are 2D or flat shapes.
Shapes are found everywhere and are not just confined to math. In a world where we use circular stop signs and rectangular flags, shape recognition helps kids observe and identify patterns. They also help in developing various other skills such as visual and spatial reasoning skills, motor skills, etc.
Yes, a shape can have both straight and curved sides. For example, a semicircle has a curved surface.