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Let's Go Fly A Kite!


This was a comment I received from a fourth grade teacher, "Would you believe on the state 4th grade math test this year, they would not accept "diamond" as an acceptable answer for a rhombus, but they did accept "kite"!!!!!  Can you believe this? Since when is kite a shape name? Crazy."

First of all, there are NO diamonds in mathematics (see Nov. 20, 2014 post entitled Faux Diamonds), but believe it or not, a kite is a geometric shape! The figure on the right is a kite. In fact, since it has four sides, it is classified as a quadrilateral. It has two pairs of adjacent sides that are congruent (the same length). The dashes on the sides of the diagram show which side is equal to which side. The sides with one dash are equal to each other, and the sides with two dashes are equal to each other.

A kite has just one pair of equal angles. These congruent angles are a light orange on the illustration at the left. A kite also has one line of symmetry which is represented by the dotted line. (A line of symmetry is an imaginary line that divides a shape in half so that both sides are exactly the same. In other words, when you fold it in half, the sides match.) It is like a reflection in a mirror.

The diagonals of the kite are perpendicular because they meet and form four right angles. In other words, one of the diagonals bisects or cuts the other diagonal exactly in half. This is shown on the diagram on the right. The diagonals are green, and one of the right angles is represented by the small square where the diagonals intersect.

There you have it! Don't you think a geometric kite is very similar to the kites we use to fly as children? Well, maybe you didn't fly kites as a kid, but I do remember reading about Ben Franklin flying one! Anyway, as usual, the wind is blowing strong here in Kansas, so I think I will go fly that kite!

A Go Figure Debut for an Ontarian Who's New


Mrs. Teacher's Store
For our Go Figure Debut this month, we head north....way north to Ontario, Canada. Pat has been an active member of Teachers Pay Teachers for about a year and a half. She states that creating and selling resources on this site has been a steep learning curve but a delightful adventure. Her TPT store is called Mrs. Teacher, and it contains 88 different resources for many grade levels and various disciplines.

Pat's background experience is actually in finance, but she has always created her own worksheets to supplement her sons' learning materials from school. When her two sons were in school, she would teach them during the summer months so that there was a minimal "summer slide" before school began again. She discovered that she enjoyed teaching so much that she now volunteers at a literacy center where she teaches basic reading, writing and math skills to adults.

She enjoys playing the flute and also has a flare for art.   She loves doing watercolor painting. In addition, Pat dabbles in creating frames, stationery, etc. although she claims that she still has much to learn in that area. In the future, she would love to create clip art, but right now, she has no clue how to even begin!

She characterizes her teaching style best as facilitating because she leans towards student-centered learning. She likes to allow the students to take the initiative for meeting the demands of the various learning tasks. She believes it is important for learning to be both fun and challenging.

In her store, Pat has a variety of math resources.  I particularly like her 41 page linear measurement package that I believe would be a wonderful addition to your math centers! It covers both the Imperial System and the Metric System and is appropriate for grades 3-5

Measuring Up contains:
  • a brief history of linear measurement
  • a test and answer key
    Linear Measurement Package
  • explanations and worksheets in both Imperial and Metric systems
  • measuring worksheets for both non-standardized and standardized units
  • worksheets for independent work and activities for working with a partner
  • problem solving
  • estimating
  • rounding off measurements 
  • working with rulers
  • measurement conversions
  • blank templates for additional practice 
  • worksheets using standard units to find the perimeter of shapes 
**Spellings are given in both American and Canadian English.

Free Resource
Pat also has an unique free resource about different kinds of lighthouses and their history. The easy-to-understand information makes the content understandable even for a young audience. (appropriate for grades 3-5)  Using this resource, a teacher might explore the dangers and challenges of life at sea, the importance of being responsible at work, etc. The students are introduced to new nautical terminology, and the included activity helps them to remember the new words.

So take a few minutes to check out Mrs. Teacher's store.  While you are there, become a follower, or download a freebie or better yet, purchase a resource for your classroom.