T4T Creating and Describing Shapes

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Directions for Activity:

1.      Organize students in pairs.

2.      Distribute prepared geoboards

3.      Ask students to generate a list of “rules” for working with Geoboards (such as leave your geoboard on the table until directed to use it. Exercise great care in placing rubber bands so as not to hurt yourself or someone else by releasing them before they are placed on pegs. Have students suggest consequences for using the tools inappropriately.)

4.      Have students to model how to create a shape with rubber bands. You may wish to use electronic geoboards on the web: http://www.mathplayground.com/geoboard.html

5.      Have several students describe the shape created. If necessary remind students of vocabulary that enables them to focus on the mathematical properties of the shape, such as sides, vertices/angles, length, width, etc.

6.      Give directions for working as partners, such as taking turns so that one partner makes a shape and gives a description for creating it as the other partner creates the shape from the description. Compare the shapes by looking at both simultaneously. Then switch roles. Complete at least three different shapes per partner.

7.      Reconvene as a class and have several students share their shapes by naming and describing them. (You might allow students to practice describing with a different partner and then describe for the whole group.)

8.      Refer to the shapes created and the vocabulary used to describe them.

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