Paper Folding Activity

Triangle congruence and similarity get a grounding in the physical world in a unique hands-on activity. Young geometers work to apply abstract concepts about angle measure and ratios to prove relationships between triangles they have created by folding paper. Questions asking the learners to make connections and predictions about the triangle relationships given other parameters, round out the activity. A great capstone activity to pull together a triangle unit.

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CCSS: Adaptable
Instructional Ideas

  • Manipulate the standard sheet of paper with the entire class, then break into students into small groups to work with other paper sizes (see questions 10 and 11)
  • Possible extension to origami unit or projects
Classroom Considerations

  • Learners might need refreshers in using the protractor or ruler and in applying ratios 
  • Fine motor skills will influence the accuracy of folds and measurements
Pros

  • Concrete activity for often-theoretical material
  • Leading questions about ratios guide discovery learning of relationships
Cons

  • No answer key provided
  • Java applet activity does not work in version 8.0 and later versions without deep security modifications in Java
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  • Activity