Sunday, September 9, 2012

How do you do that in GeoGebra?

Looking back on my own high school mathematics education, I realise I never really knew what a parallelogram was. I never knew how it 'worked', how its angles and diagonals operated, how they changed when the slope of the parallel lines was changed. The rhombus? All I could really say - if I remembered it at all - was it was a kind of squashed up square. If only I had  been given a dynamic geometry tool to play with! As a teacher now, I strive to have my students actually touch mathematical objects - to move them, push them, pull them, to watch what happens. I'm convinced that if students do that, so long as they are reflecting on what is happening to the objects (and why), they will remember them for life.  And the ideal tool for hands-on interaction: GeoGebra.  Free software, runs on Windows, Apple and Linux (anything that runs Java), backed by a community of hundreds of thousands of teachers using and sharing GeoGebra resources.

A resource I haven't found yet though is a set of simple, one page instructions I can give to students showing how to construct a certain mathematical objects in GeoGebra, so I have begun building some.

Here's the first installment:

For Junior and Middle School
How to construct a rhombus. This one appears simple but can be confusing - practice it first before giving to students.
For Senior School

I have put these links on a new GeoGebra HowTo page in this blog. These files are also available at the Maths Faculty sharing repository.

1 comment:

  1. I had the hardest time figuring out how to construct a trapezoid in GSP. Mine would always twist into a bowtie when subjected to a drag test. I'm trying to switch to using GeoGebra more now so I can help kids who do not have GSP at homee. Thanks!