My sixth graders and I dig GeoGebra. The students have spent the better part of the quarter diving deep into geometry and GeoGebra has been my anchor activity on many occasions. I worked on curriculum writing over the summer–writing targets, common assessments, etc. Yet the fun, creative part for me was gathering GeoGebra resources and organizing them into a 6th grade geometry wiki. With GeoGebra, the kids discovered area of triangles, parallelograms, and soon, trapezoids. Next they’ll examine volume and surface area with the GeoGebra applets.

The kids are incredibly engaged. Not because it’s technology. The applets are well designed learning tools. All they need to do is explore and follow some directions.

What’s even better is that GeoGebra isn’t limited to teaching geometry. I also collected several GeoGebra files for a 6th grade ratios and proportions wiki. Check out the tape diagrams, solving percents with bar models, comparing ratios, car race simulator, and more.

I am always looking for more middle school GeoGebra resources. If you can recommend any, please share.

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Dear Mary,

I’ve been using a combo of GeoGebra and Geometer’s Sketchpad with my Algebra students and have had the same results. And I loved the work you’re doing on the wiki. I think this is really smart.

Are your students in the place yet where they are creating the Geogebra activities and submitting them to you for consideration? This is what I want to do with my students and I’m just not sure how to go about it. I’d be interested to know if you’ve entertained any of those ideas.

Thanks for writing this terrific article and I hope to read more about your ideas in the future.

Hi Marsha, I’ve toyed with the idea of having students create their own GeoGebra worksheet but my sixth graders are not at that point yet. Or perhaps I should say, I’m not at that point yet. The kids are quite intuitive and could easily figure it out, but I think I would need to expose them to several worksheets, open up the “code” and have them examine how the code works. –what an excellent idea for problem solving and a way for the student display sound conceptual understanding.

On a different note, I’m sorry that I have not seen or read your blog until now. You offer some excellent commentary and insight.

I’m checking to see if Geogebra is an allowable download at our school! I can see how it would facilitate our study of linear equations and transformations!

Absolutely! The school’s computers run the Java applets so there’s no need to download. Of course if you are considering having students create their own GeoGebra worksheets, then the software would need to be downloaded. The state of Maine has a GeoGebra directory created by teachers, probably during a workshop or a paid stipend. Their site may be helpful, http://maine.edc.org/mod/resource/view.php?id=462 Also, http://www.geogebratube.org/ has hundreds of worksheets. Good luck!

Thank you for the reply and the link … I’ll check it out! Looks like I can run GeoGebra from my computer at school. Now I need to see how effective it will be since I have only that one computer in the classroom.