Quadrilaterals – Rectangles and Squares
Basics on the topic Quadrilaterals – Rectangles and Squares
How to Identify a Rectangle and a Square
Do you know what quadrilaterals are? Quadrilaterals are everywhere! Can you see any around you? A window or the front of your TV are great examples of quadrilaterals, as they are squares and rectangles.
In this video and in the following text, you will learn the definition and properties of a rectangle in geometry. In addition, you will learn the definition and properties of a square.
What Are Quadrilaterals?
A quadrilateral is a polygon with four straight sides. Any four sided shape you can think of is a quadrilateral. Is a rectangle shape a polygon that is a quadrilateral? Yes, it is! What about a square? It has four sides, so it is a quadrilateral too. Rectangles and squares are both a type of quadrilateral.
Shapes can be identified by their attributes or properties, as you will see below.
What Is a Rectangle?
Per definition, a rectangle is a polygon that has four straight sides.
It is a quadrilateral because it has four sides. How many vertices does a rectangle have? The sides of a rectangle meet at a 90 degree angle, known as a right angle, and there are four of them. How many pairs of parallel sides does a rectangle have? A rectangle has two pairs of parallel sides that are equal in length.
Properties of a Rectangle
So what does a rectangle actually look like? On the infographic below you can see a rectangle outline.
Rectangles have two pairs of opposite sides which are equal in length. They also have four right angles.
What Is a Square?
According to its definition, a square is a polygon that has four straight sides that are all equal in length.
It is a quadrilateral because it has four sides. How many vertices does a rectangle have? Just like the rectangle, the sides of a square meet at a 90 degree angle – as you now know the right angle – and there are also four of them. And how many pairs of parallel sides does a square have? A square also has two pairs of parallel sides that are all equal in length.
Properties of a Square
So what does a square look like? On the infographic below you can see a square outline.
Just like the rectangle, a square has four right angles. It also has two pairs of opposite sides, but they are all equal in length.
Summary of Rectangles and Squares
Rectangles and squares are both shapes that are quadrilaterals. Both of them have four straight sides and four right angles. While they are similar in properties, the main difference between a rectangle and a square is that a square has sides that are all the same length.
Properties of rectangles  Properties of squares 

four straight sides  four straight sides 
four right angles  four right angles 
two pairs of opposite sides equal in length  all four sides equal in length 
Would you like to practice some more? You can find exercises and worksheets about rectangles and squares on this page. Just click on the button “start exercises”. Enjoy!
Transcript Quadrilaterals – Rectangles and Squares
Today Nico is a wizard, and he is so excited! Looking dazzling in his wizard hat, Nico glances around the attic and notices a spell book on his chair. He looks inside and sees two spells to learn. Both spells require wand movements creating squares and rectangles, but Nico doesn't know these shapes. The guide will help us learn about Quadrilaterals like Rectangles and Squares, so you can do magic! Rectangles and squares are a type of quadrilateral. A quadrilateral is a polygon with four straight sides. Quadrilaterals are everywhere. Can you see any around you? A window, or the front of your TV are great examples of quadrilaterals. Squares and rectangles are different types of quadrilaterals. But how can we identify them? We can identify or sort them based on attributes, or properties. Let's begin by taking a look at rectangles. What are attributes you notice about rectangles? All rectangles have four right angles which are ninety degree angles that we can represent with a square in the corner. All rectangles also have two pairs of opposite sides equal in length. These two sides are opposite to each other and equal in length and the same with these two sides. Let's take a look at squares now. What attributes do you notice squares have? All squares have four right angles or four ninety degree corners. What else do you notice about squares? Squares have two pairs of opposite sides all equal in lengths. Like here, we can see all four sides are equal in length. A square is also a rectangle because these two sides are opposite and equal in length and these two sides are also opposite and equal in length. But a rectangle can only be a square when all sides are equal in length, like this. Before we watch Nico cast the two spells, let's practice identifying quadrilaterals. Here we see three different shapes on our screen. Let's look at this one first. There are no right angles, so it is neither a square or rectangle, but it is a quadrilateral because it has four sides. Let's check out another one. What attributes do you notice? Here we see there are four right angles and two pairs of opposite sides all equal in length, so it is a square. What about this one? There are four right angles and two pairs of opposite sides equal in length, so it is a rectangle. Remember: A rectangle is a quadrilateral with four right angles and two pairs of opposite sides equal in length. A square is a quadrilateral with four right angles and two pairs of opposite sides all equal in length. A square is also a rectangle because there are two pairs of opposite sides equal in length, but not all rectangles are squares unless all sides are equal in length! Nico is ready to cast some spells. Show us some magic Nico! "Motus chair!" "Great job Nico!" "Recedo...." Uh oh! I didn't mean to do that!" "Great job, Nico."
Quadrilaterals – Rectangles and Squares exercise

Find the quadrilaterals in Nico's attic.
HintsThere are 5 quadrilaterals to find.
Quadrilaterals include rectangles and squares.
Solution There are 5 quadrilaterals in total: 2 squares and 3 rectangles.
 The rug, broom, blanket, and glasses are not quadrilaterals because they aren't polygons with 4 straight sides.

Describe the different quadrilateral shapes.
HintsHere are some examples of quadrilaterals.
SolutionA quadrilateral is a polygon with 4 straight sides. We learned that squares and rectangles are different types of quadrilaterals.
Squares are quadrilaterals with 4 equal sides and 4 right angles. Rectangles are quadrilaterals with 2 pairs of opposite sides that are equal, and 4 right angles. Every square is a special type of rectangle because it has 2 pairs of opposite sides that are equal in length.

Identify the squares.
HintsMake sure your shape is a quadrilateral that has 4 right angles.
Make sure your shape has 4 equal sides.
There are 3 squares.
SolutionThe window, purple shape, and orange shape are all squares because they are all quadrilaterals that have 4 right angles and 4 equal sides.
The rest are all not squares.
The first shape is a rectangle because it has 2 pairs of equal sides.
The second shape is not a square because it isn't enclosed, therefore it isn't a polygon.
The third shape is not a square because it doesn't have 4 right angles.
The last shape is a rectangle because it has 2 pairs of equal sides. 
How many rectangles do you see?
HintsRemember, rectangles are quadrilaterals that have 2 pairs of equal sides and 4 right angles.
Look at the shapes that might be rotated.
Remember, squares are a special type of rectangle.
SolutionThere are 4 rectangles. 2 are special rectangles that are squares.
All 4 shapes have 2 pairs of equal sides and 4 right angles. 
Identify the quadrilaterals.
HintsA quadrilateral has 4 sides.
A quadrilateral's sides are straight.
Quadrilaterals include squares and rectangles.
SolutionThe square and rectangle are quadrilaterals because they both are polygons with 4 straight sides.

Sort the shapes.
HintsRemember, rectangles are quadrilaterals with 2 pairs of equal sides and 4 right angles.
Squares are both a square and also a special rectangle.
SolutionThe squares are special rectangles, so they are both a rectangle and a square.
The rectangles have 2 pairs of equal sides and 4 right angles.
The triangle and parallelogram are neither a square or a rectangle.