Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Foldables, origami and geometry.

Today in Geometry we had a blast doing origami.  We just started learning about points, lines, planes and intersections yesterday.  Rather than bore them with standard learning activities using points, lines, planes and intersections, I decided to incorporate origami.  After the warm-up I showed a video on the science of origami which was quite fascinating.  Dr Robert Lang, a person who can fold just about anything from a single sheet of paper, shared how origami has helped in science.  I didn't know that the way a scorpion is made in origami is the same type of folding used to put the airbag in the steering column.  The video was only 1:46 long but the kids were so interested in the material, they asked me to show the video again.
I had loaded two origami apps onto the iPads earlier this month.  One is Origami instructables while the other is "How to make origami" .  Personally, I prefer the latter because each step allows you to have the app show the actual fold if you want more than just the directions.  My students had so much fun, they didn't want to put away the iPads when the bell went.  Tomorrow, I will have the students create a summary of how they used point, lines, planes and intersections in this activity.
A couple weeks ago, we had a short after school class on Foldables created by Dinah Zike.  I wasn't sure my high school students would buy into them but they did.  They were focused and on task.  For Algebra II, we will be filling in the information over the next couple of weeks while in College Prep math, we created a foldable for the 6 basic trig ratios including as they relate to the unit circle.  It was awesome. I think that high school kids still like to make things and don't often get the chance unless they are enrolled in an art class.  I have to pull out my book on using foldables in math.