Thursday, March 21, 2013

2D Geometry Hands-On Polygons {Common Core Math Activities}

This week I've been detailing the lessons and activities from my 2D Geometry Bundle that I recently did with my class. Today I want to show you some of the hands-on activities I created to keep them engaged. These activities are available as a 3 Product Packet or as part of the 100+ page cost-saving Bundle.

{Click to access and download my 2D Geometry Bundle 

I had my students work with a partner to complete the Polygon Collage activity. I provided each of my friends with a blank frame to create their collage (the packet includes 3 different styles to select from) and a single die to share. One child would roll the number cube, look at the guide and pick up the corresponding pattern block. The partners then needed to discuss the attributes of the block and then trace it onto their mat using a pencil. 
If you are concerned your students will rush through the discussion to get to the drawing, you may opt to challenge them to “have the last word.” To do so tell them that the person who rolls makes the first statement about the block (i.e. It is a trapezoid). Next the partner makes a single statement (i.e It has four sides). Then the original student makes another statement (i.e. There are 4 vertices). They should go back and forth like this until there is nothing left to discuss. Make their goal be to be the last one to think of something to say about it’s attribute. This added bit of “competition” can often motivate them to really get their minds going.

When they were tracing the figures, they were encouraged to overlap the shapes. This provides a really nice look to the collage. Afterwards each student traced their pencil outlines in black marker and colored in the sections in bold colors to create a collage. I later had them “show what they know” about polygons using words.  I was able to get a good sense of their understanding of polygons through their writing. 

I paired their writing with their collage and mounted them onto varied colors of construction paper. I used the writing paper from my packet (the packet includes 5 different versions of the writing paper) and had them color the polygons around the edge to give it some extra flair.  I’m so proud of their finished products and have stashed them away to display at our Spring Open House in a few months.

I used popsicle sticks for the Build a Polygon center in my classroom, but any of the following would work as well: unsharpened pencils, pipe cleaners, toothpicks, etc. I copied the building guide onto colored paper and folded it over to form a table tent at the center. Students used the hands-on manipulatives to construct various polygons.  They then drew them onto paper and labeled the diagram with details about the shape. 
We used the Polygon Sort activity to provide an opportunity for students to demonstrate their understanding of the attributes of a polygon. I had my friends make notes about the figures on each of the cards before cutting them out. Some chose to color the shapes in.  Next I had them prepare their sorting foldables and place the cards into the correct pocket. To differentiate you could have them simply sort the cards into the two pockets or have them write full explanations of why the shape is or is not a polygon.

{Click to access and download my 2D Geometry Bundle 
or the 3 Product Hands-On Packet Featured in this post}

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