## Wednesday, January 23, 2013

### Geometry & VersaTiles

We are just wrapping up our unit on Geometry.  Our learning targets were directly related to 2D and 3D shapes as well as a few other skills (i.e. parallel line segments, polygons, etc.)  My students needed a lot of hands-on practice with counting the faces, edges, and vertices.   I am fortunate to have access to a set of Giant Geosolids in my classroom to help with identifying the 3-D shapes.  Here's a picture of the tools we work with:

With these shapes, we used this interactive anchor chart:
The blue cards are attached with fun-tak.  Hiding underneath each blue card is a hand-drawn picture of the 3-D shape.  The students also had a pile of sticky notes and a pencil.  The students would match the name of the shape with the drawing.  Then, they would grab the matching 3-D shape from the box of Geosolids.  They worked with a partner to count (and agree upon) the number of faces, edges, and vertices for their shape.  Then they would write the number on the sticky note and attach it to the anchor chart.  This makes the chart re-usable and the students can practice many times.

Another activity we tried was working with VersaTiles.  If you aren't familiar with these tools, here are two important pieces you should know about.  First, the answer cases:

Next, the workbook pages:

When students open their answer cases, there are two parts: numbered tiles and lettered spaces.  I have the students put the numbered tiles in the top tray first.  As students answer each question on the workbook page, they move the tiles to the corresponding answer.

When all 12 questions have been answered, the answer case may look like this:

Students close the case (top to bottom) and then flip the case upside down away from their bodies.  When they open the case, there is a colored pattern showing:

The best part of all?  These answer cases are self-checking for students to work independently.  In the bottom corner of the workbook page, students check to see that they have the correct pattern showing.  Voila!  My kiddos think it's like magic and can't wait to see what the colors and patterns look like when they finally get to open the case.

Oh, a quick fun fact . . .
I went to the ETA Hand2Mind page on Facebook and clicked "like".  One day they were having a giveaway for a set of answer cases.  I entered and found out I won 10 cases!!  The cases just arrived and I can't wait to share them with my students.

Another great resource I found comes from Amanda Chutorash.  She has a 2D and 3D Shape Geometry Pack on TpT.  One of my favorite pieces of this pack is the 2D and 3D Shape Books that the kids get to make.  When we used the 2D book, my students used color to highlight the parallel line segments of the shapes included.  In the 3D Shape Booklet, the students color the faces, edges, and vertices on each picture.  These books are awesome!!

What other fabulous resources have you found for your Geometry study?  I'd love to hear about them so I can add notes to my lessons for next year :)