This is a Level 3 Geometry activity from the Figure It Out Series.
A PDF of the student activity is included.
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- Apply the features of two dimensional shapes to solve puzzles.
- Copymaster of puzzle
- Scissors, ruler
- FIO, Level 3, Geometry, Shaping Up, page 1
For both activities, students need to visualise the shape they are trying to make. You could help students by relating the shapes to their use in the environment, for example, a stop sign (octagon), a hazard sign (rhombus), and a road patrol sign (circle).
For this activity, students need to consider these features of a square: four equal sides and four right angles. (The comments for page 1 provide further details on the right angle.) Ask students, “Where are the right angles in a square?”
This activity is useful for introducing polygons. Poly means many and gon means angles. If a polygon is regular, all its angles are equal and all sides are equal.
Polygons that students might use include:
- pentagon Penta is the Greek word for five. (A pentathlon is an athletic competition that has five events.)
- hexagon Hex means six.
- heptagon Hepta means seven.
- octagon Octa means eight.
- nonagon Nona means nine.
- decagon Deca means ten.
Polygons with sides and angles that are not equal are called irregular polygons.
Answers to Activities
- Answers will vary. A useful start is identifying the right angles on each piece to make the corners. Students might also look at the length of the sides or the size of the angles.