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Broadbent Maths - creative primary maths

How many ways can a star be drawn?

Tuesday, 10 December 2013
Two different ways to draw a star are by placing two regular shapes one on top of the other or by drawing diagonals to alternate points on regular shapes.
Have a go at these with your class - here are examples, for both KS1 and KS2, 
to start you off.
Two regular shapes (KS1)
Use pairs of regular shapes of the same size.
Ask your class to place one over the other to make the outline shape of the star.
Write the number of points on each star and ask:
What do you notice about the number of points on stars made from regular shapes?
(There are an even number of points – reinforce odd and even)
Write the number of corners on each shape next to the number of points on the star made from that shape.
What do you notice about the two numbers?
(The number of points on the stars are double the number of points on the shape – reinforce doubling and x2)

star shapes
Joining the vertices of regular shapes (KS2)
Mark dots on paper for each vertex of a regular shape.
Start on a dot and draw a line to alternate dots, missing out one dot each time.
 Use pentagons, hexagons, heptagons, octagons and nonagons.

What happens if two dots are missed and lines are drawn to every third dot?
Which stars can be made from one continuous line?
What differences do you notice between even-pointed and odd-pointed stars?
How easy is it to make a star from a triangle? A square?
How many different stars can you make from a nonagon?
How many different stars can be made with 5, 7, 9 11, 13 points?

Can you predict how many different stars can be made with 15 points?
How many different stars can be made with 4, 6, 8, 10 points?

star dots
Take a look at this YouTube clip – just to get yourself into the mood for this investigation.

It may be rather too quick for your class, but sometimes it’s good for you to enjoy your maths too!

Related articles:
12 days of Christmas – a maths investigation
How many presents were sent altogether by the end of the 12th Day of Christmas?

A song to start 12 Days of Christmas investigation 
Hoopla Kidz has some good YouTube songs and it's 12 Days of Christmas is a nice start to this investigation

Make a star for Christmas
Creative shape and measures activities - perimeter, angles and proprties of 2D shapes.
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