Free task cards: area and perimeter with castle blocks

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Due to D,8’s continuing obsession with all things Camelot, I created these free task cards to help him, and your own students, learn area and perimeter using castle blocks.

This was a pretty simple set up but he spent hours exploring the concept even after he’d finished the task card I let him choose each day.

You need:

Castle blocks

Graphing paper with big squares the same size as your blocks, or close to – this stuff is great if you sew too, for creating patterns.

My free task cards for area and perimeter with castle blocks for the activity (click the link to download)-I have left these as a doc so you can change the questions as needed. If you use them in a post, though, please send people to the link for this post to get theirs 🙂

free task cards area and perimeter with castle blocks

I wanted D to understand WHY we calculate area and perimeter. It always drove me crazy when I was a kid when we had to learn a math concept with no explanation of where we would ever use it! What I did was to create  5 Camelot-themed task cards for him, with a different reason for the calculation each time. The task cards gave him something that he could refer to without having to ask me to repeat over and over again.

I started D out with the basic explanation that we “guard the perimeter, but fill the area”.  He readily grasped the thought that in order to fill the area you needed to know how much space was in it in total, and that to guard the perimeter you need to know how much space you’re guarding around the castle.

Then we got out the graphing paper and laid it out on the table. D chose the task card where the kingdom was at war and a guard was needed for each square around the perimeter. We took it step by step.

area and perimeter task card

laying out perimeter blocks

writing out the length and width of each side of the perimeter

adding the total of the sides to find the perimeter

summary of the perimeter

Next up, we looked at the wedding feast task card. This time he needed to figure out how many chairs would fit inside the room in all (area). He started out trying to count but thanks to his practice with skip counting he sped right to multiplication to calculate his answer.

area and perimeter task cardcalculating area with castle blocks


This was about all he could manage in one day, so the other cards, which require more complex thinking, we left for other days this week. The joy of this is that because he loves breaking out the blocks and his knight figurines, there are endless possibilities for reinforcing the concept, something I will do during our daily math story this week as well.

How have you explained area and perimeter to your kids? Feel free to share a link in the comments!
I’m a week late posting, but don’t miss these great posts around the blogosphere about learning with building blocks:





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1 Comment

  1. This is interesting! Would love to see your posts in the Practical Mondays Link Up:)

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