Solutions and Templates What is a tangram and what is the purpose of a tangram? Tangrams are ancient, truly fascinating Chinese Puzzles, made up of seven movable geometrical shapes, with which you can create thousands of pictures and designs. Learn to make your own, the easy way. The purpose of this puzzle is to use all seven pieces or tans to create a picture or design. The ancient rules dictate that the pieces must lie flat, they must touch and they are not allowed to overlap. Another fun activity is to solve puzzles - this means you take a tangram picture/image and figure out how the shapes were placed to create that image - sounds easier than it is.