During the day, any student who uses the seat throughout the day can use the Desk Doodle to sketch or doodle along with problems or notes to occupy their hands while engaging their brains.
Each of these 4 versions of Desk Doodles also includes a unique tool for students to self-assess their knowledge. There are three or four symbols that students can color in to indicate how they feel they understand the concept.
You can walk around the room and quickly gauge your students understanding!
In the first option, there are designated areas to jot down notes and thoughts. It also has a large coordinate plane students can use for graphing.
Choose this option for Algebra, Algebra 2, or Pre-Calc classes. They can sketch functions, write key ideas on the clipboard, and main thoughts in the bubble.
Option 2 has a coordinate plane along with a designated x and y-axis. There is a table with an x-column and y-column next to the plane. This option would be great for learning about coordinate planes or graphing lines.
This version is great for middle school Pre-Algebra when learning to plot points, graph basic linear equations, and work with tables.
The third option includes a blank grid, perfect for drawing nets or figures, or finding area or perimeter! Underneath, there is a box to write a formula. Kids can also make marks on the circle when learning diameter and radius.
They can shade the cube to work with faces, vertices, and edges. They can even use their dry-erase markers to write dimensions in any of the figures as they work practice problems. This option is ideal for a high school Geometry class or to swap out for middle schoolers when you get to the geometry unit in 6th, 7th, or 8th grade.
This option features a smaller grid, a number line, and some areas for notes. There is also a nifty area for students to indicate whether they completed their homework or not.
This version is perfect to have out on desks when working with integers and / or fractions. Kids can work with converting between mixed numbers and improper fractions using the fourths in the circles, and they can work with comparing and ordering negative numbers. The number line is so handy to have out on desks when working with integer operations!
Benefits of Doodling
Desk Doodles are a great way to get started with Doodle Notes, or are great to add to your already doodle note-friendly classroom. They work to occupy your students’ hands, while keeping their brains focused.
Doodling in class activates both hemispheres of the brain to increase:
Do you like the sound of Doodle Notes and want to learn more? Check out Doodle Note Club!
Click the image above to download the file.
Learn more at doodlenotes.org
Let us know in the comments below how much your students love Desk Doodles! Also, don’t forget to enter you email to subscribe.
To Read Next:
New Ways to Teach Definitions & Axioms: Points, Lines & Planes
Sometimes, Always, Never Freebie
Who can say no to a free printable download to start out with? I sure can’t! Especially one that gets students active and critically thinking, while giving you a break from time-consuming planning and grading!
This “Sometimes, Always, Never” activity comes in two different versions; you can choose which one will fit in your lesson the best, or just save one for when you need a review activity.
The best feature of this lesson is the way it gets students talking. You’ll hear some deep thinking out loud, and maybe even a healthy argument or discussion as pairs work together to think through each case.
In this version, each student gets a handout filled with circles that have a “fact” inside. Students decide if it’s sometimes true, always true, or never true; then, using the key on the side of the handout, they color in the circle.
When colored correctly, the design can quickly be checked for accuracy; students won’t be able to predict the design!
This activity would be great for those early finishers on test days, because it can be easily completed alone!
The 2nd version of this download has a similar concept, but it is a sort, so you may choose to incorporate it differently; it would be a great station. Students have cards with the same “facts” and sort them into three categories, (Sometimes, Always, Never), on a sorting mat.
You can print the cards and sorting mat on colored cardstock and laminate them to re-use each year!
Geometry Sketch Game
Sarah, from Everybody is a Genius, saw her students were becoming bored with geometry definitions; so, she came up with a simple game to liven things up and give her students some extra practice!
She drew out 10 sketches of figures with points, lines, and planes, making them increasingly more complicated. She let her students pair up and gave each individual 5 cards with sketches and 5 blank index cards.
The students took turns describing their sketch (using only words) for their partner to draw. When the student was done drawing they compared sketches. If the sketches matched up, then they got a point. Then, the students switched roles.
As you know, I love getting creative and adding color and design to rigorous learning. Learning new topics while using creativity not only helps your students relax, but increases memory and retention.
Shana, from Scaffolded Math and Science, gives so many wonderful ideas for creating fun word walls in your high school classroom!
Since word walls are commonly used in elementary classrooms, you have to get a little more creative to ensure there is age-appropriate detail. Beginning a geometry unit is the perfect time to begin using a word wall; there are so many new terms to learn!
Real Life Problems
We all have heard the endless questions about applying math to real life; so why not practice some real-life problems in your own classroom?
The Teaching Channel shares a great video of a 6th grade teacher inviting her students to solve a real-life geometry problem about finding a table for 22 people! Think about what you are teaching in class, and try to notice how you can integrate it in your everyday life; from you can develop a developmentally appropriate problem for your students.
Geometry Construction Art
Once you get through some of the definitions, axioms, and tedious introductory material, it’s a great time to dive into the first constructions and get a little hands-on. I love teaching the basic constructions, and kids love to pull out the compass and get working in a different way.
In the Math Giraffe TPT store, you can find an artistic project including three intricate designs that increase in difficulty level.
Students follow the instruction page for each design, using a compass and straight edge. They end up with a beautiful design that they can color and hang around the room.
In addition to basic circles and arcs, the following constructions are included (with guidance):
* Perpendicular bisector
* Equilateral triangle
* Copying a distance
* Constructing a regular pentagon
High School Geometry Super Bundle
This awesome bundle from the Math Giraffe Teachers Pay Teachers store gives you access to ALL Math Giraffe high school Geometry activities!
BONUS: Once you purchase the bundle, you also get any updates and additions for free by re-downloading in your ‘My Purchases’ tab!
I hope these ideas help you to liven up your geometry lessons! Do you have any other creative geometry lesson ideas? Comment below; we’d love to hear!
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To Read Next:
As a hard-core pencil and paper math believer, I am excited to find apps that actually offer a good blend of fun and rigor (which is always my goal as I strive to throw away the “fluff” and spend every minute of precious class time engaging their brains to the max)! It helps me to start exploring more tech integrations to use alongside the hands-on and paper & pencil activities that I love so much.
Whether during class, or for homework on their device of choice, this roundup of apps is perfect for practicing math skills, reviewing topics, or great tools for working on math problems!
Note: Some of these apps include premium features available for purchase within the app, but all basic features are free to download from the app store!
1. Isosceles: geometry sketchpad
With this app, your students can learn about geometry through creating their own sketches or exploring tutorials to learn about different angles, lines, circles, and more!
My favorite aspect of this app is its approach to interactive learning. Every tutorial guides you through learning points to help you pass a quiz over the material. Your students can then return to creating their own sketches, using versatile tools to create complex designs.
You don’t have to worry about creating accurate and precise lines; this app does it for you! Isosceles automatically snaps new additions to nearby objects, in order to keep your drawing accurate.
2. Photomath: Camera Calculator
With this unbelievable app, your students can snap a picture of an equation to calculate the answer.
All you have to do is simply point your smartphone camera and snap a picture of the problem; like magic, this app will calculate the answer and provide detailed step-by-step instructions!
Because this app features handwriting recognition, students can even take a picture of a problem they have written down. It can be a great resource for students to check their own work.
This app supports arithmetic, integers, fractions, decimals, roots, algebraic expressions, linear equations, quadratic equations, and so much more!
Obviously, you'd need to be careful that students use this correctly and monitor closely during tests, but the benefits can be great. I can't tell you how much time I've spent walking around answering "Can you just tell me if it's right or not?" during practice time when students want to just quickly know if they are on the right track.
3. Quick Graph
On this snazzy app, your students can instantly see the line of any equation they wish to input. This app is another great resource that allows students to check their work.
This simple, but intuitive interface makes it so easy for your students to enter and/or edit equations. Then, they can choose to view it in 2D or 3D.
This app includes a handy evaluate feature, which evaluates equations at specific points, and a library to store commonly used equations.
4. Protractor 1: Angle Converter
This virtual tool is not only a protractor; it is a convertor, too! When you use a regular protractor you sometimes need to convert between degree and radian, or vice versa.
With this simple to use app you can instantly switch between degree, radian, gradian, and revolution. When a student forgets or misplaces his or her protractor- no more excuses!
Note: This app does NOT provide other activities; it is simply an awesome and helpful tool for measuring angles!
5. SAT Math Review
This app provides over 1400 comprehensive math questions with solutions and 140 revision notes. It covers many essential math subjects, including:
The material provided in this app provides excellent review and/or essential practice for your students. Without a doubt, this app will help your students rock their SAT and get into their dream college!
My previous collection of app finds included my favorite discovery-based interactive math apps in this post. Inquiry / exploration is one of the best ways to use technology, in my opinion. Kids can now visualize and investigate concepts that were so hard to show before. That was the first way I was able to start exploring ways that the phones could finally actually supplement the learning instead of distract from it. Do you have any favorite apps for teaching math that offer the same? It can be so hard to filter out the ones that are worthwhile. Let us know in the comments below!
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