Teacher Lesson Plan
This activity is aligned to NCTM Standards - Grades 6-8: Number and Operations, Algebra, Geometry, Measurement, Problem Solving, Reasoning and Proof, and Communication and California Mathematics Standards Grade 7: Number Sense #1.4, Measurement and Geometry #1.1 and Mathematical Reasoning #1.1, 1.3, 2.2, 2.4, 2.5, 2.8.
Students investigate the attributes of squares and rectangles including length of side, area and perimeter using an interactive web page (technology) and also geoboards (manipulative). After working through the first problems and recognizing certain patterns, students are asked to investigate rational and irrational numbers. Students explain what they have explored in a paper/pencil activity.
Building a bridge between technologically representing the squares and rectangles and the actual physical squares and rectangles is important. Visiting the problem using both techniques addresses a variety of learning styles, offers the interest of bringing the abstract into the concrete and includes the interest of interacting with the computer while investigating, discovering, forming hypotheses, drawing conclusions and benefitting from the quick feedback a computer provides. Once the students have had these experiences it is important to arrive at a synthesis by spending the time necessary to internalize the concepts. Manipulatives can provide space for group work, computers for individual explorations, and synthesis can take place during a full-class discussion followed by each student demonstrating their individual understanding using the writing process.
Directed tasks #1:
Directed tasks #2:
Charting the investigation:
We have considered squares and rectangles with areas of 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, and 9. Fill in the following chart:
What patterns do you notice?
Directed tasks #3:
Let's consider the following:
It is interesting to note that the squares with side lengths equal to 1, 2, and 3 and corresponding areas of 1, 4, and 9 have side lengths that are rational numbers. Squares with areas of 2, 3, 5, 6, 7, and 8 have side lengths that are irrational numbers.
Introducing the activity:
Pass out the following materials for each student:
Instruct the students to construct squares with areas of:
On the isometric dot paper, record your results from the geoboard investigation.
At this point, students have investigated the problem using technology (manipulating the square/rectangle) and manipulatives (using geoboards).
"Give me a number, any number, and let's see whether we can write it as a fraction!"Square Roots
Integers, Rational Numbers, Irrational Numbers - Ask Dr. Math FAQActivity
Roots by George W. Bright and Susan E. Williams
Home || The Math Library || Quick Reference || Search || Help