Thursday, 7 March 2013

This egg tangram provides an enjoyable and different Easter maths activity. Pupils work in groups or individually and explore the different shapes they can make from using all 9 tangram pieces.

The page is copied from a set of books I wrote with Peter Patilla a few years ago, called ‘Maths Weekly Workout – Independent Problem Solving.’ They are just about out of print now but were a cracking little series that you can still get from Amazon, I think.

How to draw an Egg Tangram

Pupils can try constructing the shape themselves by following these instructions.

• Draw a circle with a radius of 4cm.

• Draw a vertical line 10cm in length from the centre of the base of the circle, through the centre point and up out of the top of the circle.

• Draw the two sides of the oval and other lengths by copying accurately from the picture.

• Cut out the oval and then cut along the black lines to get 9 pieces.

• How many different shapes can you make?

• How many different bird shapes can you make?

This egg tangram is a particularly good set of shapes for making birds. How very appropriate to get birds from an egg!

• Can they put the egg back together again? (Without looking at the the original template.)

This could be a timed activity, how long does it takes each group? How much quicker can you put the egg back together the second time?

The shapes, especially with the birds, can be used as a display or as pictures for an Easter card.

### Teaching tip:

Before working on this, it may be worth reminding your pupils about the differences between the two types of oval – the ellipse and the egg-shape.

The ellipse, or ‘squashed circle’ has 2 lines of symmetry whereas the egg-shaped oval only has 1 line of symmetry.

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