(It will be difficult to answer this question without 'advertising' for a retailer, but I've searched for these several times in the past few years, to no avail.)

In Math From Three To Seven (The story of a Mathematical Circle for Preschoolers), the author makes frequent reference to a set of plastic shapes, each of which has four attributes:

  • Colour (red, green, blue, yellow)
  • Shape (square, circle, triangle)
  • Size (big, small)
  • Holiness (it, uh, has a hole in it. Or it doesn't)

The set is complete - all $(4)(3)(2)(2) = 48$ blocks.

The footnote in the text refers to these as "Dienes Blocks", which today, are "universally known and easy to obtain". The problem, though, is that searching for 'Dienes Blocks' returns different products from the same manufacturer / brand / personal legacy of Zoltan Dienes - namely Base-10 blocks.

From ZoltanDienes.com,

Dienes’ name is synonymous with the Multi-base blocks (also known as Dienes blocks) which he invented for the teaching of place value.

That's great and all, but how do I find these other blocks?

  • $\begingroup$ upvote for holiness alone :) $\endgroup$ – Jasper Dec 6 '16 at 16:42
  • 2
    $\begingroup$ I found something with the name "attribute blocks", but instead of holiness they have thickness. Maybe you can use them, or drill a hole through either thick or thin. $\endgroup$ – Jasper Dec 6 '16 at 16:47
  • $\begingroup$ @Jasper That's awesome, thank you so much. (Your comment makes a pretty great answer - maybe resubmit it as an answer?) $\endgroup$ – NiloCK Dec 7 '16 at 1:58
  • $\begingroup$ I searched for Dienes logic blocks. I found them at minilandeducational.com/en/logical-blocks $\endgroup$ – Amy B Dec 7 '16 at 5:29
  • $\begingroup$ As above, I believe that it is thickness rather than holiness characterizing the 48 Dienes blocks. From p. 1 here: "Dienes created a structured set of attribute blocks that consisted of 48 plastic blocks: 4 different shapes (circle, triangle square and non-square rectangle), 3 different colors (red, blue and yellow), 2 sizes (large and small) and 2 thicknesses (thick and thin)." $\endgroup$ – Benjamin Dickman Dec 7 '16 at 5:36

There are several vendors, but I was unable to find shapes that differ in holiness. Instead, they are different in size, color, shape and thickness.

They seem to go by the name attribute blocks or logic blocks.

They are available at amazon or, as @AmyB said in the comments, here:


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  • 1
    $\begingroup$ Am I the only one that's uncomfortable that one of the shape attributes is a subset of another (square, rectangle)? $\endgroup$ – Daniel R. Collins Dec 7 '16 at 21:11
  • $\begingroup$ Square and non-square rectangle seem to be included in the original design (see comment to question). I think you can either make use of this fact or discard one of them from the set. $\endgroup$ – Jasper Dec 7 '16 at 21:16

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