Sowing the seeds of education

What is the concept behind the Shapeys®?

The Shapeys® products use the four Shapeys® cartoon characters to engage and interest the children.

The Shapeys® products are constructed to take a child through learning English from a starting point of no or little English knowledge.

The Shapeys® Steps phonics system will introduce the children to letter sounds and systematically teach them to decode words. The teaching objective of Shapeys® Steps phonics system is to introduce the first 100 words of the English language, both decodable and non decodable words, as well as the alphabet.

The Shapeys® books series is designed to be used after the phonics system and to engage and interest the children through simple everyday stories involving the four Shapeys® characters. The stories introduce everyday items, places and situations likely to also be experienced by the young learners. The stories are designed to softly introduce specific lesson objectives. Once the story has been read through, exercises in the activity book will enhance the lesson objective. We summarise this as “learning through stories”.

What is the age range for these books?

The targeted age range is four years old and upwards. If you intend to use the original range written in British English, the student will need to have mastered a reasonable level of English, such as having completed the Shapeys STEPS® phonics range, or a similar phonics introductory programme.

As the range is available globally, the targeted age range can vary from four years old to eight years old depending on your location and the age at which English has been introduced to the student.

However, the Shapeys® range has been translated into a number of languages. If you choose to use the Shapeys® range incorporating a national language other than English, four years old would be an appropriate starting age.

What does the range consist of?

The range consists of

  • 1. Shapeys® Steps phonics guide
  • 2. Shapeys Book Series

The Shapeys® Steps Phonics System

The Shapeys® Steps Phonics System is designed and constructed for teachers to introduce the very basics of the English language to young students in a fun and engaging way. The teacher simply follows the instructions within each lesson plan and activity sheet.

The system includes the four Shapeys® characters to engage the children as they learn.

The teaching objectives of the three Shapeys® Steps Phonic System;-

Objectives Step One:

a)      Introduce Environmetal sounds, instrumental sounds, body percussion, rythym and rhyme. Alliteration, voice sounds, oral blending and segmentation.

b)      Encourage the child to listen and discriminate sounds forimg a good basis for the remaining Shapeys® Steps Phonics System.

Objectives Step Two:

a)      Introduce a decodable sound for each of the 26 letters in the English alphabet.

b)      Introduce the decodable words contained within the high use top 100 English words.

Objective of Step Three:

a)      Introduce the sounds of some double letters (e.g. ch, sh, st)

b)      Introduce the names of the letters by learning an alphabet song

c)       Learn tricky words or non-decodable words (sometimes referred to as sight words) and the remaining non-decodable words of the high use top 100 English words.


Number of Weeks

Lessons and Activities

Step 1

7 Weeks

77 Lessons and Activities

Step 2

7 Weeks

28 Lessons, 49 Activities

Step 3

9 Weeks

51 Lessons, 57 Activities

The Shapeys® Book Series consists of:

64 full colour books in total, 48 reading books and 16 activity books

There are four subjects, English, Mathematics, Science and Life Skills. The range is split into Level 1 and Level 2. Each subject, by level, consists of 4 reading books and 2 activity books.

Reading books in Level 1 have 16 internal pages. Reading books in level 2 have 24 internal pages. All activity books have 48 internal pages.

What added value does the range offer?

The Shapeys website is,

On this website, via password, you can obtain for free;

a) hundreds of lesson plans

b) MP3 files of each reading book read by an English actress

c) fun activity sheets

d) a downloadable version of the Shapeys® song

e) downloadable Catalogue

The books can also be translated into any language, in single or bilingual format.

Country specific pages can be used. These introduce money- as in notes and coinage, local fruits, flowers, national emblems, flags and specific celebrations.

Shapeys® also offers an in house or online training programme for educators.

For agents selling Shapeys®, we offer full marketing back up, including pop up stands and marketing merchandise such as pens, mugs and caps.

Why choose the Shapeys®?

For children;

a) Fun and colourful characters children can relate to and understand

b) Promotes high interest learning

c) Covers subjects and situations directly related to children’s lives

d) Creates student interaction with activities related to themes

e) Builds confidence while accomplishing work

f) Enjoyable and memorable stories

For Parents;

a) Stimulates early English (or local language) reading and writing

b) Covers subjects and concepts that meet education goals

c) Easy to incorporate into a classroom or home learning programme

d) Encourages creative thinking

e) Supports positive attitude to peers and environment

f) Stimulates and motivates children to learn

How do I use the Shapeys® series?

The Shapeys® series can be used as a curriculum, as a backup to a mainstream curriculum, or on an ad hoc basis to target a student’s need.There are six simple steps to follow;

1) The educator must firstly choose the objective of the lesson. For this example, let’s choose to teach “shapes”. (An “Easy Guide” is available for teachers)


2) Next, select the appropriate reading book, in this case, Mathematics Level 2 Book B “Shaping Up” and the appropriate activity book, Mathematics Activity Book Level 2 Part 2.

3) Go to the Shapeys® website ( and select the appropriate lesson plan*.


4) Follow the teacher’s notes on the lesson plan and prepare any items required and you are ready to teach.


5) Teach the children by either reading the book to them yourself or play the MP3 file and follow the lesson plan with the children.


6) Complete exercise 34 in the activity book.

*The lesson plans provided are free and act only as a guide. Teachers may prefer to adapt or use their own lesson plans.

What is the educational content of the books?

The Shapeys® series covers basic English, Mathematics, Science and Life Skills.The educational content of each book can be found adjacent to the front cover image in the catalogue pages.

Alternatively, the recap page on the inside back cover of each reading book shows the targeted lesson for that particular book, as below.

The contents page on the inside front cover of each activity book shows the theme and objective for the exercises contained within each activity book as in this example below.

The whole range has been broadly based on the desired educational levels to be achieved in Europe, the United States of America and Asia. Research in these regions, along with the commissioning of reports by our advisors in specific countries, showed there is commonality across these three regions of about 80% as to what is expected for children aged four to seven years old in the subjects covered by this range. Some examples of commonality amongst each of these countries would be to expect a five or six year old to be able to recognise basic mathematics such as numbers up to ten, understand basic science such as hot and cold, have language skills using a vocabulary of a few hundred words and know simple Life Skills such as the basics of personal hygiene.

In addition to the general educational content, Shapeys® can also incorporate country specific content. This can include translation into local language, money- as in notes and coinage, local fruits, flowers, national emblems, flags and specific celebrations.

How do I buy the Shapeys® series?

The Shapeys® series can only be purchased through our network of agents. Please send your initial enquiry to

Thank you for using Shapeys® products.