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Spring SAVY 2017, Day 1- Discovering the Third Dimension

Posted by on Tuesday, January 31, 2017 in Grade K, SAVY.

Welcome to Discovering the Third Dimension! Your kindergarten mathematicians arrived ready to learn and explore all the geometry in our world. We described geometry as the study of shapes and their relationships. We began our SAVY session looking at 2-D plane figures. Next week, we will add symmetry, congruence, and transformations to our 2-D knowledge bank. With that scaffold, our 3-D explorations begin. By our last SAVY Saturday, we will use our new content knowledge to design a playground and communicate our visions of 3-D structures in a 2-D way.

It was delightful getting to know your students! Collaboration, taking academic risks and practicing communicating ideas are vital features of a SAVY session. As partner groups, we chose attributes by which to classify shapes. This led to discussion of vertices and sides [and some new polygon names]. In charting our findings, a student conjectured, “Hey, if it has 4 vertices, it has 4 sides, pentagon 5 vertices…” Others were able to extrapolate using angle and shape materials, to agree or disagree and to “proof” their conjecture [with both regular and irregular polygons]. It’s such fun to facilitate these bright learners!

We composed and decomposed shapes and created patterns with pattern blocks and K’Nex. In exploring with angles made from straws, we began noticing the concept that changing the orientation of a shape does not change its properties. Developmentally, children’s spatial reasoning begins identifying only a right triangle as a triangle. We identified many shapes by properties of sides, vertices, and angles, so that they could begin to identify shapes beyond equilateral and equiangular.

Our shape walk, both inside the classroom and outside on the Magnolia Lawn, helped us see shapes in our world – many just on the Wyatt Center building alone! We played a shape Lingo game and used an interactive video to synthesize our new knowledge.

This SAVY session, we are considering a few deeper reasoning questions: What shape is most important in construction? Why? How would an architect/engineer/construction worker view it? If the world is 3D, why do we need to know about 2 D shapes?

[Logistics: We will be having a snack break each week. Please send a nut-free snack with your mathematician. We will also hopefully go outside each Saturday, so please dress for the weather.]

It was a great first Saturday of SAVY! Thanks for learning with us.