cheesemonkey wonders

cheesemonkey wonders

Thursday, October 9, 2014

Constructions Castles

Einstein was right — imagination IS more important than knowledge.

I used to think of that quote a lot as I walked the Princeton campus, through quadrangles and past trees that — legend had it — he had crashed into on his bicycle while he was lost in his thoughts.

I passed his house on Mercer Street every week on my way to music lessons, and I wondered if his sister had not had the door painted it bright red so that he might notice it and not bump into it.

When I realized I would have to teach both constructions AND proof this year in Geometry, I first thought of them as a Big Obstacle. But seven weeks in and I have fallen in love with constructions. I created this Constructions Castle project to give students plenty of practice doing constructions while also giving them a chance to develop their understanding of how shapes and angles fit together.

I think their work speaks for itself.

Files are on here (zip file with all tools).

UPDATE (10/22/14):

The more students do this project, the more awesomeness is revealed:


  1. This is an awesome project - thank you for sharing! The students enthusiasm and high standards for their own work is evident; you clearly inspired them. One question - did you show them any examples before they started or let their imaginations run wild? Kudos - Wendy M

  2. Thanks, Wendy! I did not show them any examples because (a) I didn't have any and (b) I wanted them to let their imaginations run wild. I did give them permission to use phones in class to search for example images of castles or other ideas. It was a great way to get them thinking beyond just following the recipes. Thanks for commenting!

    - Elizabeth (@cheesemonkeysf)

  3. We did this earlier this spring and I finally blogged about it! See . There was a fourth poster (it's a small class), but we can't figure out where it is. It was very cool too. I'll add it if we locate it!

  4. I love this project. How much class time did you give them to complete it?

  5. I would LOVE to do this with my classes. The links are broken. Any chance you could fix the links? I would appreciate it!

  6. I love this project! I came across the same issue as Nicole, any chance I could download the files?

  7. Elizabeth,

    I absolutely love this project. However, I tried to download the zip files and it said that they were infected with a virus? Is there another way I could get them?


    - Collin

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