Triangle Exploration is an introductory lesson for both
teacher and student on how to use The Geometer's Sketchpad software,
a visualization environment that covers a broad range of the mathematics
curriculum. The software is easy to get accustomed to, and this unit
provides plenty of screenshots and step-by-step instructions. As the
title to this project implies, the focus here is on triangles. A horizontal
line is drawn first. Next a parallel line, then a base on the lower
parallel line. Two triangles are drawn with the vertex on the top
parallel line. The area of both triangles is found and an analysis
of the their area follows.
Students understand the basic properties of horizontal and parallel
lines, and the area of a triangle. They use geometry to complete basic
Required materials include a computer with Internet Access and
The Geometer's Sketchpad software. A free trial version may be downloaded
from this site: http://keypress.com/sketchpad/.
Students of many levels will find this lesson beneficial. A student
who does not understand basic geometric concepts will learn, as will
a strong math student who is not familiar with the Sketchpad software.
Triangle Exploration is a great program for both teachers
and students to learn how to use Sketchpad software, which offers
insights into much of the mathematics curriculum.
Try the lessons before presenting them to the class. Make sure
the computers are student-ready with working Internet connection and
applications before engaging students.
About the teacher:
Laura Anderson has been teaching for 20 years. She currently teaches
Web Design, Mathematics, and Computer Programming at Edward A. Reynolds
West Side High School in New York City.