A Math Forum Web Unit

Constructing Your Own Set of Tangrams

Tom Scavo

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    a rectangular piece of paper suitable for folding
    a pair of scissors
    a ruler (optional)


A complete set of tangrams consists of seven pieces:

    a small square
    two small congruent triangles
    two large congruent triangles
    a medium-size triangle
    a parallelogram

You can make your own set of tangrams from a single piece of paper.

Just follow these simple steps:

  1. Fold a rectangular piece of paper so that a square is formed. Cut off the extra flap.
  2. Cut the square into two triangles.
  3. Take one triangle and fold it in half. Cut the triangle along the fold into two smaller triangles.
  4. Take the other triangle and crease it in the middle. Fold the corner of the triangle opposite the crease and cut.
  5. Fold the trapezoid in half and fold again. Cut along both folds.
  6. Fold the remaining small trapezoid and cut it in two.

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Tom Scavo
5 August 1996