Do you remember learning shapes (geometric forms) in school? Knowing different shapes can be very useful (helpful). Shapes can be a good way to describe (talk about) things. Especially (most of all) when you’re learning a new language!

Have you ever learned shapes in English? Maybe you did not. If you don’t know shapes in English, this blog is a good starting point (beginning). Even if you know shapes in English already (from before), keep (continue) reading. This blog will be a good review (learn again)! Read on to find out (learn) more about different shapes in English.


A square is  a shape with four lines. Each line is of equal (the same) length. There is a line on the top and bottom, and a line on the right and left side. What is square in your house? Some boxes are square-shaped, for example. Sometimes tables are squares. The table I have on my balcony is a square!

Many cities have a city square or town square at the center of the city where the people can meet. At the city square, there are usually no (almost never) cars. Times Square in New York City, St. Peter’s Square at the Vatican, Red Square in Moscow, Trafalgar Square in London, for example, are all famous squares. Can you think of anything else that is a square?


A circle is a shape that is one line. The line starts at the top, and goes around in a ring shape, connecting (going) back to itself at the top. Think of it like a flat ball. If you have ever drawn a ball, then you drew (past tense of draw- draw drew drawn) a circle. A pizza is in the shape of a circle. So is the top of a pot (holder) for a plant. Some street signs are also circles! What can you think of that is a circle?


A triangle has three lines. This means that a triangle has three points. The name triangle is a very good one. This is because there are three (tri) angles (space between two connecting lines). Triangles are not normally found in nature (in the natural world). But there are many things that are triangular in shape. The Egyptian pyramids, for example, are large, 3D triangles.


A rectangle is very similar to a square. However, it’s a little different. A rectangle has four sides, but two sides are longer than the others. For example, the top line and bottom line are longer than the lines on the sides. In this case, the top and bottom lines are the same length. Then the lines on the sides are the same length. This makes a rectangle look like a stretched square. Books are rectangular. So are yoga mats. Many blankets are also rectangular (rectangle-shaped). There are many things in our houses that are shaped like rectangles.

Pentagon, Hexagon, Octagon

A pentagon is a shape with five sides. A hexagon has six sides. And an octagon has  eight sides. Once you have more than four sides, many shapes start being named after how many sides they have.  Stop signs are shaped like octagons all over the world. The Pentagon, which is a government building in the U.S., is…you guessed it!…shaped like a pentagon (meaning it has five sides). Can you name anything that’s shaped like a hexagon?


Like a rectangle, an oval is a stretched circle. It looks almost like a circle, but thinner and longer. If you want to picture (think of) an oval, think of an egg. An egg is slightly (mostly) oval-shaped. For example, the Earth’s orbit (how it moves around the sun) is not circular (circle-shaped). Rather (instead) it’s more oval-shaped. Did you know that? Many people don’t!

Do you know any other shapes in English? Do any of these shapes have similar names in your native language? Share with us in the comments below!

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Check out these other popular blogs: Furniture Vocabulary in EnglishCommon Vacation Phrases in EnglishPassive vs Active Voice in English, or these Portuguese Loan Words used in English!

Erin Duffin lives in Hamburg, is an English teacher, blogger, yoga instructor, and loves spending time on her rectangular yoga mat.

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