This mini-unit could be done during an Algebra 1 unit on quadratic equations and specifically after the introduction of the axis of symmetry.

The objective is to understand symmetry with a pattern on a 2D coordinate plane.

To help students better understand symmetry (and aid in their understanding of a parabolic axis of symmetry) students could be directed to this site:

http://www.haelmedia.com/OnlineActivities_txh/mc_txh4_001.html

It is very intuitive and will help students understand how to recognize symmetry on a 2D coordinate plane and allows them to complete and create symmetrical patterns. (If computers are not accessible, the teacher can handout cutout shapes that the students could fold in order to understand symmetry).

This activity uses both algebraic and geometric reasoning: quadratic equations and the axis of symmetry are a segway to better understanding symmetry with geometric shapes on a coordinate plane.

Assessment: ask students to first draw several geometric shapes on construction paper. Shapes could include circles, triangles, rectangles, etc. Have them draw the lines of symmetry on each of the shapes. Urge them to be creative through the use of color and patterns.

This lesson ties directly to ensuring students understand important and basic math concepts (i.e. Symmetry). Hopefully it also engages the students through the use of manipulatives and shows them symmetry relates to shapes they encounter in everyday life.

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I think this is a great mini-unit on symmetry. I like how you direct students to the internet site–I think using technology is a great way to engage students. To improve this unit/lesson I would simply make the assessment measurable by using a metric to determine whether or not students mastered the objective. Giddyup!

Recognizing symmetry speaks to the first item on the list of mathematical sophistication. Since that is your initial task here, I think it only appropriate to mention it first. You are also having the students “create physical models” on the construction paper.