Making a Glyph

Saturday, October 18, 2014
I love making glyphs with my Kindergartners.  It combines math and art all in one great project. Why make a glyph?
math glyph definition

The glyph this month was a Jack-o-lantern.  I asked the kids different question and based on how they answered the questions, they build their Jack-o-lantern.

math and art fun with glyphs

I ask kids a question and then have them line up in the room based on their answer.  This gives them a good visual of and is a great concrete graphing lesson.  Then they head back to their seats and cut and glue the shapes depending on how they answered the question.  Some of my little guys want specific shapes and don't like being told what shape to use, but we talk a lot about how we are collecting data and if they use the shape they want and not the shape that represents their answer, then our data will be invalid.  This is tough for the little ones, but it reinforces listening skills and following directions.  I tell them that they can make another Jack-o-lantern for fun in the art center later in the week.

Our Jack-o-lanterns always turn out really cute.  I put them on the bulletin board and I place the glyph key along side the artwork.  This was our first glyph of the year so I made the key really big so that the parents could learn about glyphs as well.

We spend the rest of the month going over the data collected on the glyph.   We look at different parts of the glyph and collect and analyze the data during math time.  Here are two ways that we look at the data.
analyze pictorial data using glyphs


  1. Ok, I never could wrap my head around what a glyph was until now. Thank you. I need to chew on how to incorporate this with my older kids. I am a homeschool mom and mentor and have kids from 9-16 in my one room schoolhouse. They will love this.
    I noticed in your classroom glyphs that none of the kids liked to 'play outside best'. We need to all work on this one!!

    1. Bekki, so happy that my post helped you understand glyphs. Glyphs are actually perfect for multi-age settings. Give one a try and see how it goes. And you are right, my kids overwhelmingly voted for video games over playing outside. I didn't take a picture of my entire bulletin board for my blog post, but two kids picked playing outside as their favorite activity. Two out of 23 is not good enough though, you are right, we need to work more on that!


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