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					                                        TANGRAMS
                             A VERMONT STANDARDS BASED UNIT
                                      FIVE DAY PLAN

DAY ONE
Objectives:
       1. The child is able to tell me that a tangram is an ancient Chinese puzzle used to tell stories. The
           puzzle begins with a square, which is cut into sever standard pieces.
       2. The child is able to tell and show me the shapes that are found in a tangram. The shapes consist
           of two large triangles, one medium triangle, two small triangles, one square, and one parallelogram.
       3. The child is able to tell me that each piece is called a tan.


       Today I will introduce tangrams to the children. I will begin by reading and
explaining the following chart that I have created.


                                                                        Child’s rebuilt tangram puzzle.

 “A tangram begins
 with a square, which
 is then cut into seven
 standard pieces.
 Each piece is called a
 tan.”




       Next, I will read Grandfather Tang’s Story by Ann Tompert. This is a story about an
old Chinese man who sits beneath a tree with his granddaughter, telling her the tale of two
foxes that change themselves into ever-fiercer animals as they compete for dominance. As
he speaks, he rearranges two tangram puzzles to form the shapes of the animals.
       After we have discussed the book I will distribute a colored copy of a tangram to
each child and have they cut it into the seven pieces. After giving the children ample free
exploration time, I will discuss the various shapes with them. To conclude, I will have them
try to rebuild their original square.

Vital Results: LISTENING 1.13 (g): Students listen actively and respond through discussion, writing, and
using art forms. After listening to the story and discussion regarding tangrams, the children will be creating
a tangram of their own.

Fields of Knowledge: MATHEMATICAL UNDERSTANDING 7.7 (c): Students identify, classify, and name
geometric. After exploring their own tangram puzzles they will identify the various shapes of the puzzle.
DAY TWO
Objective: The child can tell and show me the three
motions or movements of each tan. The tans are
manipulated through slides/translations, turns/rotations,
and flips/reflections.

       After reviewing what a tangram is used
for and the pieces that that is comprised of, I
will begin to discuss and model the three motions
that each piece can take. I will use the chart to
the left to demonstrate the motions.


Next, I will have the children complete the
following worksheets, which will allow them a
chance to practice each move.




                                                                             Child’s work showing
                                                                             more practice.




Vital Results: PROBLEM SOLVING 2.2 (d): The student can identify patterns and connections. After
manipulating the tans in various ways the children will begin to understand the patterns they make.

Fields of Knowledge: MATHEMATICAL UNDERSTANDING 7.7 (b): The students examine, compare, and
analyze real objects and abstract figures. The children will be investigating the various motions that tans
can make.
DAY THREE
Objective: The child is able to manipulate the tans to cover various designs. Placing and moving tangram
pieces around into a puzzle outline will help children improve their spatial visualization and problem-solving
skills.


       I will begin with an oral review of the past two days lessons. I will provide the
following questions as the review. What is a tangram? What are they used for? What
shapes make up a tangram? What is each piece called? What moves can each piece take?
       Next, I will divide the students into groups of four. Each group will be placed at a
table that is provided with four sets of tangrams and several outlined designs. The groups
will rotate through each table until they have had a chance to see and work with all
available designs.
                                               Student’s working with
                                                  tangram designs.
       Sample of available
           designs.




Vital Results: PROBLEM SOLVING 2.2 (b, e): The students can use a variety of approaches and transfer
strategies from one situation to others to solve problems. The children will use knowledge from days one and
two to complete various designs.

Fields of Knowledge: MATHEMATICAL UNDERSTANDING 7.7 (a,g): The students can solve problems by
showing relationships between figures; and can extend and create geometric patterns, concrete and pictorial
models. The children will be solving puzzles using flips, slides, and rotations.


DAY FOUR
Objective: The child is able to make geometric shapes (squares, triangles, rectangles, and parallelograms)
using some or all of the tangram pieces.


       I will begin with a review of the same questions used in yesterday’s lesson. After
this review, we will begin to make several shapes, beginning with the square. I will first
ask that all students hold up their square piece. We will discuss the characteristics of the
square. A square has four sides and four right angles. All the sides are the same lengths
and pairs are parallel to each other. Next, I will ask the children to find as many ways as
possible to make a square using their tans. After they have had ample exploration time, I
will invite volunteers to display their squares utilizing the overhead projector. This will
allow all students to see many results. I will continue in the same manner through each
shape.



         Examples of possible
              solutions




Vital Results: PROBLEM SOLVING 2.2 (b): The students can use a variety of approaches to solve problems.
The children will discover several possible ways to create each geometric shape.

Fields of Knowledge: MATHMATICAL UNDERSTANDING 7.7 (a,g): The students can solve problems by
showing relationships between figures; and can extend and create geometric patterns, concrete and pictorial
models. This is similar to yesterday’s task. The children will be creating geometric shapes using flips, slides,
and rotations.


DAY FIVE
Objective: The child is able to use all past knowledge to create tangram pictures and stories of their own.
       I will again begin with a review of the same questions used on day three. Next, I will
show the class two pictures that I have created using my tangram pieces, explaining that
they will create pictures and stories of their own. When their work is complete, I will
bring the class together sitting in a circle on the floor. The children will be given the
opportunity to share their results.


                      My pictures
                      created to model
                      to the children.




Vital Results: EXPRESSION 1.15 (a): The students can share information. After completing self created
designs or pictures, the students will be sharing their work with their classmates.

Fields of Knowledge: MATHEMATICAL UNDERSTANDING 7.7 (g): The students can extend and create
geometric patterns, concrete and pictorial models. The students will be designing creative pictures using the
tangram pieces.
Sample’s of children’s pictures




          The following worksheets and manipulatives, which are being used by Ciara in
          the photo below, are two examples demonstrating the supplemental materials
                    that were used with my lower students during this unit.

				
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