image Receive free math worksheets via email:

Article Summary: "If you really want to understand just how vast a role geometry makes in everyday life there is a fun little game that you can play. Simply look around a room (your room at home, your classroom, the interior of a common store) and write down the various items you see and the corresponding geometric shape associated with them."

Home > Math Tips > The Geometric Shapes You See Everyday and Don't Realize it

The Geometric Shapes You See Everyday and Don't Realize it

Geometry is literally everywhere, but many people do not recognize geometric shapes even when they are commonplace. If you were to ask people to close their eyes and imagine geometric shapes the images that come to their mind will probably be something along the lines of the various illustrations found in geometry textbooks. While this would not be an inaccurate image it is a limited one. Geometric shapes often do not look in real life exactly like what they appear in the textbooks. They are, however, there and if you stop and pay attention you will be surprised at the sheer volume of them that are there.

For example, riding in a car will bring you in contact with a ton of geometric shapes. When you are in car riding down the street you come across a number of geometric shapes. In fact, geometry plays a significant role in maintaining traffic safety. A stop sign is critical to preventing cars from hitting one another when they come to a corner. Upon closer examination, you can see a stop sign is simply a hexagon colored white and red with the bold proclamation of the word STOP imprinted on it. While stop signs are clearly noticeable traffic lights may be a little trickier to decipher as stop lights combine geometric shapes. The red, yellow and green lights are, of course, circles and they are encased either horizontally or vertically in what is obviously a rectangle. Oh, and by the way, those wheels on the car are circles too!

Now, if you look out the window of the car you will see a lot of buildings. Rectangles and squares are pretty difficult to avoid if you are looking at real estate. Homes and skyscrapers and buildings are collectives of squares and rectangles even pentagonal shapes. Of course, within these structures are a number of angles that create various triangle shapes. Some of the roofs on people's homes are triangular in shape and you probably have noticed that a doorway is commonly a rectangle.

Then again, you don't have to wonder outside your own home to see geometric shapes. Your own room is made up of geometric shapes. The ceiling and the floor are often obviously squares or rectangles or similar structures. If you look at the corners of your room you will probably notice the triangle created out of the angles these corners make. The truly astute among you probably also notice that the crease in the corners is obviously a straight line. Yes, geometric shapes are pretty much everywhere!

Yes, you can often recognize that virtually every object in the world is a geometric shape but we sometimes do not realize how it is next to impossible not to see geometric shapes. So why is it people seem somewhat surprised when this is pointed out to them? While people can often recognize shapes they have a tendency to not make the clear correlation. After all, no one while walk up and down the aisles of a grocery store and say "Oh look! Cereal boxes look like rectangles!" But you can play a game designed to increase your awareness

If you really want to understand just how vast a role geometry makes in everyday life there is a fun little game that you can play. Simply look around a room (your room at home, your classroom, the interior of a common store) and write down the various items you see and the corresponding geometric shape associated with them. An example would be "Clock = Circle." When you undergo this little exercise it will become somewhat surprising how just how many geometric shapes are present that you may have not otherwise realized before.