The most wonderful time of the year is here once again, and with holiday cheer come many lighthearted opportunities for math learning!
Here's an ancient Chinese geometric puzzle that's fun and challenging... and will give your spatial recognition skills a boost! A tangram consists of seven moveable shapes called tans, which are all cut from one square.
All tangrams are made up of tans with the following shapes and proportions relative to the square they're cut from. Each side of the main square equals 1 unit, and its area equals 1 square unit (source):
To get started, click here to download your very own tangram activity packet, including a set of tangrams you can cut out, as well as some tangram puzzles for you to solve! To solve each puzzle, simply arrange all the pieces to form the silhouetted figure in such a way that all pieces touch without overlapping. When you're done, flex your spatial recognition muscles a little more and see if you can create the following figures using all seven pieces in your set:
Then, using your imagination, what other figures can you make? Get those creative juices flowing and have fun!