Last week our district 6-12 math teachers spent the day learning to create math tasks with teacher Zach Herrmann, Evanston Township High School. We experienced three perplexing, high school geometry tasks and observed Herrmann’s delivery before being given time to create our own tasks.
Our sixth grade PLC developed a task based on students discovering that the altitude, not the slanted edge, is used to find the area of parallelograms, trapezoids, obtuse and equilateral triangles.
Which figure has the greatest area is actually a trick question. Each polygon has an area of 10 inches sq. The altitude of each figure is 1 inch.
This is a small group task. If the students need help, a representative can ask a question. We want to develop perseverance and resourcefulness so we’ve decided to use the line, “You may use any tools available in the classroom.” We want the students to discover for themselves how the ruler, graph paper, etc. can assist them. We also wanted to create disequilibrium so we positioned each figure so that the base is not necessarily on the bottom.
I really want a polished look so I don’t want to upload a file with hand drawn figures. I’m still learning Sketchpad and I’m having trouble getting the correct size when I paste the figures into Word. As soon as I tackle the problem, I’ll repost.