Construct an Equilateral Triangle (part 1)

Drawing circles isn't the only thing compasses are good for. In this first installment of a 36-part series, high schoolers learn how to draw equilateral triangles by investigating real-world situations, such as finding the location of a third cat in a room. They then compare their construction techniques with the steps Euclid described in his Elements.

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CCSS: Designed
Instructional Ideas

  • Have class members work in pairs to discuss their ideas about finding the location of the third cat before sharing with the rest of the class
Classroom Considerations

  • It's assumed that learners have little or no experience with compasses and straightedges
  • Discussion of the relevant vocabulary could take more time than allotted; be sure to plan accordingly

  • Resource has all necessary materials, including solutions to the problem set
  • As with all EngageNY lessons, the teacher's guide is comprehensive and includes timing suggestions, as well as where to look for mathematical practices

  • None