The Shape Family Babies

Science Books and Films - June 2014

Babies is a cute and fun way to present and teach shapes to early elementary students either in the classroom or at home. It covers the rectangle, rhombus, triangle, polygon, trapezoid, parallelogram, hexagon, quadrangle, pentagon, quadrilateral, octagon, and square. Shapes are taught through the story of a rectangle father and a rhombus mother who have triplets and do not know what to name their 3rd child who is neither a rectangle nor a rhombus. They ask all their (differently-shaped) relatives who suggest shape names. Ultimately, the Great- Aunt realizes the 3rd child is the spitting image of Great-Great- Grandpa Square – hence, the 3rd child shall be called ‘Square’. The drawings are simple, uncluttered, colorful, and eye-catching. The symbols for right angles and equal sides are included in drawings so that these concepts can also be taught. There is a section at the end of the book that provides the actual definitions for some of these shapes as well as explanations on the types of angles. A quiz at the end is a way to ensure comprehension. All in all, a great book that I will enjoy reading to my children.
- Shelley Spohr, Griswold, CT

Library Media Connection

In this charming tale, Rhombus and Rectangle join together and have triplets. One baby is exactly like the mother, one exactly like the father, but the third is a hybrid of her two parents and is unidentifiable as a shape. Family members come together to offer their ideas. Through this story, readers are introduced to geometric concepts and proving one’s statement, but not all of the statements lead to a successful geometric proof, until the shape of square is identified and a successful proof is achieved. This book is a wonderful introduction to shapes’ traits and identification. The book ends with information on shape parts, quadrilaterals, and exercises on identifying shapes based on provided traits. This book is wonderful for reading aloud to younger children, and can also be used as a literary connection to introducing geometry to older children. Sara Rofofsky Marcus, Contributing Methodologist, Walden University, Minneapolis, Minnesota RECOMMENDED

Horn Book Guide

A rhombus-torsoed mom and a rectangle-torsoed dad have a baby who resembles "both of her parents. She had four right angles and four equal sides." Geometrically varying relatives suggest names ("Parallelogram," "Quadrangle," etc.), but the giddy reader knows from the get-go that "Square" is the answer.

City Book Review - May 2014

I think these characters are super weird. It is so weird. Who ever heard of a shape family? The father’s body is a rectangle, and the mother’s body is a rhombus. They fell in love and got married, but then they had one baby that looked like the father, and one baby that looked like the mother, but the third baby was a different shape. They needed to ask their relatives what they should call it. But they didn’t remember the name ‘square,’ when the third baby was a square. Only the mother and father’s great-great-grandfather square was a square. When great-Aunt Hexagon arrived, the problem was fixed because she said the baby was the exact spitting image of Great-Great-Great-Grandfather Square. The other relatives were shapes like triangle or pentagon or trapezoid. This book is fun. It is fun to read about how squares are like the different shapes, although I already knew it. The people are very strange-looking because they have shapes instead of bodies.
- Reviewed by Raif, Age 5

Feathered Quill Book Review - March 2014

This is a fun tale that will help young students learn about geometric shapes. The tale of the Shape family will help them learn not only the names, but also what they are comprised of. For example, when Aunt Hexagon talks about naming the baby, she says that “She has four angles. We could name her Quadrangle.” Like all the other characters in this book, her body is shaped like the shape she’s describing. Some of them have background illustrations showing a visual mathematical representation. The artwork is simple, thus bringing the shapes to the foreground. There are four pages of activities in the back of the book. Additional complementary activities can be accessed on the publisher’s website.

Home School Book Review - March 2014

Shapes galore! Author Kristin Haas, a third grade teacher with a Masters in Elementary Education, knows how books inspire learning and engage the minds of young readers. The Shape Family Babies will encourage young math students at home or in classrooms to learn about the various kinds of shapes. The “For Creative Minds” section in the back has further information about polygons and quadrilaterals and a “Name that Shape!” exercise. Also, an additional teaching activities guide is available online at the publisher’s website. With Shennen Bersani’s cute illustrations, this is an adorable way to introduce or reinforce the different geometric shapes.

Heck of a Bunch - March 2014

All characters have different shaped bodies and the book explains what each shape is. It's a good way for children to learn shapes they otherwise might not know about. The "For Creative Minds" section in the back of the book enhances learning with a Name That Shape activity, information on shape parts, and information on quadrilaterals. Younger children will not have a hard time with the story part of the book, but the "For Creative Minds" section may take more mental capacity due to the lengthy words and descriptions.

Tif Talks Books - April 2014

Haas brings us an unique mathematical tale in The Shape Family Babies.  Mother Rhombus and Father Rectangle are pleasantly surprised with tripletts.  One looks like mom.  One looks like dad.  The third has qualities of both mom and dad, but is something else entirely.  I also found myself pleasantly surprised by how well this geometric tale worked and how much I enjoyed it.  The true indicator of the success though is demonstrated by how frequently my daughter returns to this book again and again.

Reader's Haven Reviews - April 2014

This book is about Mr. and Mrs. Shape who are expecting three babies. The couple who is a rectangle and a rhombus are trying to decide what to name their new bundles of joy. Mr. and Mrs. Shape ask family members for help in choosing their special, unique names. This book is more than just a cute story about a family. This book integrates geometrical shapes into a story using vibrant illustrations along with important math lessons. 

Learning Table Reviews - June 2014

Readers are introduced to geometry concepts in this picture story book for early learners. The Shape Family Babies demonstrates how fun it is to cross the curriculum and use "different" resources like picture books for textbook-heavy subjects like math. Plus, language arts, math, and reading comprehension are all combined, so young learners are immersed in the concepts presented.