Short Blocks

Maths Year 4 Spring Shape (B)

Each unit has everything you need to teach a set of related skills and concepts.

Unit 1 Line of symmetry: identify and construct (suggested as 2 days)

Planning and Activities

Day 1 Teaching
Display a pattern drawn on one side of a line of symmetry (see resources). Discuss the concept of ‘line of symmetry’ and begin to complete each pattern. Provide copies for children who complete each symmetrical pattern. Children create their own symmetrical patterns, colouring just 12 squares lines of symmetry.
Group Activities
-- Create symmetrical patterns across one or two lines of symmetry.

Day 2 Teaching
Draw an irregular but symmetrical hexagon. Ask children to say whether it has a line of symmetry. Then draw half of an irregular but symmetrical octagon. Children need to draw the other half. Discuss shapes with two lines of symmetry and draw one, identifying the two lines. Model how to use a mirror to check for symmetry, perhaps using the Symmetry ITP.
Group Activities
Use the in-depth problem-solving investigation ‘Tremendous Tiles’ as today’s group activity.
Or, use these activities:
-- Identify the lines of symmetry on 2-D shapes; draw shapes with a given number of lines of symmetry.
-- Identify whether shapes are symmetrical. Draw the lines of symmetry on 2-D shapes.

You Will Need

  • ‘Symmetrical patterns’ sheets 1 and 2 (see resources)
  • Squared paper
  • ITP: Symmetry
  • ‘Shapes for sorting’ sheet (see resources)
  • Mirrors, rulers and a set of 2D shapes (regular, irregular, symmetrical, not symmetrical)

Mental/Oral Maths Starters

Suggested for Day 1
Draw irregular polygons (simmering skills)

Suggested for Day 2
Compare pairs of numbers with 2 decimal places (simmering skills)


Suggested for Day 2
Count on or back in steps of 50 and 100 (simmering skills)

Mastery: Reasoning and Problem-Solving

  • Shade 4 more spaces on this grid (see download) to create a pattern with two lines of symmetry.
  • Draw a shape with exactly four lines of symmetry. It does not need to be a polygon.
  • By shading just one ‘cell’ on a 3 by 3 square grid, how many different symmetrical patterns can you make? Be careful not to count reflections or rotations of patterns already made…
    How many different patterns can you make if you are allowed to shade 2, 3, 4 or 5 cells?
    Can you make a prediction about how the number of patterns with 6 cells shaded will relate to the number with 3 cells shaded?

In-depth Investigation: Tremendous Tiles
Children explore creating patterns of tiles with three asymmetrical blocks. They look for and identify lines of symmetry, creating patterns with at least two lines of reflective symmetry.

Extra Support

Colouring Triangles
Make symmetrical patterns by colouring the set of triangles. Colouring Triangles from

Unit 2 Angle types; properties of polygons (suggested as 4 days)

Planning and Activities

Day 1 Teaching
Draw a succession of given angles (see Teaching and Activities document). Ask children which are larger/smaller than 90°. Identify acute (sharp) angles as less than 90° and obtuse (blunt) angles as being between 90° and 180°. Compare angles by placing them on top of one another.
Group Activities
-- Compare and classify angles.

Day 2 Teaching
Show a number of different triangles. Discuss what they have in common and how they are different. Remind children of the previous learning on triangles of different types and identify these. Then focus on the types of angles in each.
Group Activities
-- Explore the angle properties of different types of triangles.

Day 3 Teaching
Remind children of the definition of a quadrilateral. Ask children to draw a quadrilateral (different to their neighbour’s), then to mark right angles with a little square, acute angles with ‘a’ and obtuse angles with ‘o’. Did their neighbour’s shape have the same number of each type of angle?
Group Activities
Use the in-depth problem-solving investigation ‘Rabbit Run’ from NRICH as today’s group activity.
Or, use this activity:
-- Investigate the angle properties of quadrilaterals.

Day 4 Teaching
Draw a parallelogram and a trapezium. Both are quadrilaterals. Children describe each, including what is the same and different. Both have 2 parallel sides (same distance away from each other, like train tracks). Move on to sort other quadrilaterals by properties, including a square, rhombus and oblong.
Group Activities
-- Draw quadrilaterals, based on properties including types of angles.
-- Compare and classify quadrilaterals, based on properties including types of angles.

You Will Need

  • Interactive Whiteboard set square
  • ‘Comparing and ordering angles’ sheet (see resources)
  • Set squares, scissors, protractors and coloured card
  • Flipchart, whiteboards and pens
  • Paper copy of triangle 2 (equilateral triangle) from Day 2
  • Elastic bands and geoboards
  • Rulers
  • ‘Sorting quadrilaterals’ sheet (see resources)
  • Venn rings (or hoops)
  • Sticky notes

Mental/Oral Maths Starters

Suggested for Day 1
Count on and back in steps of 0.01 through multiples of 0.1 and 1 (simmering skills)

Suggested for Day 2
Multiply and divide numbers by 10 and 100 (simmering skills)

Suggested for Day 3
Division fact bingo for 8 times table (simmering skills)

Suggested for Day 4
Division facts for 7 times table (simmering skills)


Day 1
Compare and order angles, and identify if they are acute or obtuse.

Day 2
Identify acute, obtuse and right angles in triangles.

Day 3
Identify acute, obtuse and right angles in quadrilaterals.

Day 4
Sort quadrilaterals into Venn diagrams based on their properties.

Mastery: Reasoning and Problem-Solving

  • True or false?
    A triangle cannot have two right angles.
    A triangle with one right angle cannot be isosceles.
    A quadrilateral cannot have exactly three right angles.
    A quadrilateral can always be divided into two triangles by drawing just one straight line.
  • Sketch the following:
    A triangle with one obtuse angle.
    A quadrilateral with two obtuse angles.
    A triangle with three sides of identical length.
    A quadrilateral that has two lines of symmetry but no right angles.
    A quadrilateral with two pairs of parallel lines but no right angles.

In-depth Investigation: Rabbit Run
Help Ahmed to build a run for his rabbit using planks of different lengths. Rabbit Run from

Extra Support

Jig Shapes
Complete the shape jigsaw and describe the shapes for a partner. Can they guess which shape you are describing? Jig Shapes from