EXPLORING AREA AND PERIMETER.
I wanted to use some of the resources that we talked about in class and record them here for future reference. I watched the “Sensible Flats” episode from Cyberchase and it was super effective and relevant to the topic of area of shapes- especially polygons. In the episode, an evil villain, Hacker, was thrown in jail because he had land that appeared to be larger than that of Judge Judy’s- which is not allowed. Hacker had a virus running on the Motherboard and the kids in the episode were thinking that if they tried to help Hacker get out of jail he might give them the anecdote to the virus so Motherboard could return to her full health. In order to help Hacker, they had to determine if Hacker’s piece of land which was an irregular polygon was actually larger than the judge’s rectangular piece of land. They used a method counting up the squares making up a grid in Judge Judy’s land. After counting up the squares, they determined the area of the rectangle was 15 and could be found easier by multiplying length times width- 3×5=15. So the area of any rectangle can be found by multiplying length by width. Hacker’s land was harder to measure because it included angles and unequal sides, but by rearranging the shape, they could determine that his land was actually the same size as the judge’s! This episode would be a great way to give the students a break while still having information be taught. It could be a good hook to get the students interested and thinking. I might have an activity where I could have shapes similar to Hacker’s and have the students cut them out and figure out if they are equal to a rectangle I paired with the shape. Other activities might include taking them to a computer lab and having them play some of the games provided on the Cyberchase website. There is a “can’t wait to tessellate” and “tangram” games that would be relevant to the geometry sections. Also, I checked out the teacher section. There’s a TON of information regarding different activities and lessons. Some I found really interesting were the programming a robot episode and the tessellations. I definitely would like to decorate my classroom with my students’ work when we are in a geometry unit.
For the rest of my time, I decided to finish my tessellation. I am pretty pleased with its outcome, but I found that it didn’t match up perfectly because tracing it was difficult. Maybe i could get some really thick materials for the students to make them out of.
I would like to know if I am covering some good ground here. I loved the Cyberchase website and spent a lot of time on it. I found myself watching more math cartoons than necessary, but they are a really great resource for the classroom! Neat.