Monday, 21 January 2013

Snowflake maths

Just for the records, we have had non-stop snowing over the weekend, so it looks like we are not going anywhere far for a while.

With the examination of the properties of snowflakes from our previous science lesson on snowflakes, we followed naturally onto the mathematical aspects of this interesting phenomenom: symmetry.

We have previously touched upon the idea of symmetry so we did a quick revision with a ruler and the snow crystal prints to determine the number and types of symmetrical lines we could find in each snowflake print.

Using a protractor, we explored a little about the 60-degree angle that were very prominent in the snowflakes we examined.

Once Tiger grasped the basic understanding of the protractor and angles, he used it to mark the location of the lines of symmetry in a circle before cutting it into a hexogonal snowflake.

Next, we learned about three types of symmetries: vertical, horizontal, and rotational.

There was a lot of cutting involved in this series of lessons, as we learned about different ways to fold and cut our papers to achieve design we wanted.

One way to think of the line of symmetry is to regard it as the line where a mirror would be placed. With that in mind, we used a mirror to prove that the reflection in the mirror was the same as the symmetrical pattern we made.

Still working along the concept of the mirror-image/reflected image, Tiger did more excises which comprised of:
1) cutting out letters that can be formed from mirror images (capital letters A, C, E, H)

2) drawing a symmetrical figure

3) constructing symmetrical figures using T-square and different-angled triangles, then colour them in.

The ideas for this lesson come from these books:

Besides the hands-on activities, we also watched a clip about the application of symmetry:

This post is linked up to:
1) Look What We Did: January Link-Up
2) All Year Round Blog Carnival: Winter
3) Share it Saturday
4) The Sunday Showcase 1/19/13
5) Math Monday Blog Hop #83
6) Hip Homeschool Hop - 1/22/13
7) Hearts for Home Blog Hop
8) Weekly Wrap-Up: The One with the Renewed Motivation
9) Homeschool Mother's Journal: January 25, 2013
10) Collage Friday - Feeling Like a New Person
11) It's a Wrap
12) Hobbies and Handicrafts - Jan 25
13) TGIF Linky Party #60 


  1. What fun winter activities!! Thanks for sharing!

  2. Thank you for sharing on Math Monday!

  3. This is wonderful! My boys would get a lot out of doing this, too.

  4. That's a fun way to learn about symmetry. You should check out the symmetry artist website. It's a neat sketching program.

  5. What a fun, interesting and hands-on way to learn a math concept!

  6. Love your hands on math concepts to learn about symmetry! Thank you for linking up to the brand new Hearts for Home Blog Hop!


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