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 Discussion: All Topics Topic: activitiy ideas for the Pythagorean Theorem

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 Subject: RE: activitiy ideas for the Pythagorean Theorem Author: Alaska Sunshine Date: May 4 2008
Hi Dawn,
Actually, I just taught a "discovery" lesson on the Pythagorean Theorem this
(high and low) had a great time completing the task and discovering why the P.
Theorem actually works.

1.  You need 3 triangles with the following angles:  1. right,  1 acute, 1
obtuse

2.  It works best if you use 3 different colored sheets of paper, keeping each
"leg" the same color and the hypoteneuse the same color.

3.  We had 12 x 18 " construction paper to glue our triangles on.

So, here's what we did.  The resource kids we did together, the gifted kids, I
gave them the directions and let them run with it.

Easy "guided" version

Measure the hypoteneuse (c) of triangle 1, make a squard using that measurement;
for example, if the hypoteneuse measured 5 cm, students would make a 5 cm
squard.  Glue it on your paper.

Measure leg a of your right triangle.  Let's say it's 3, make a 3 cm square.
Glue on top of hypoteneuse square to cover the area.

Measure leg b of your right triangle.  Let's say it's 4 cm, make a 4 cm square.
Glue it on top of hypoteneuse paper, you will have to cut it to make it fit.

Leg a squared plus leg b squared will cover the entire square of hypoteneuse
c.

Repeat the same procedure of the acute and obtuse angled triangles.
Results:  acute:  too much and will have extra
obtuse: not enough to cover the square of the hypoteneuse.

Time to complete activity:  30 minutes.