Fun with Symmetry

You're probably here to find new activities to add to your symmetry unit, so let's begin!

Symmetry Provocation
Moment of Truth: I am an old soul.  An old fart.  I'm quite resistant to change so I haven't fully embraced the play and inquiry model.  For now I'm introducing bits and pieces to create more of a balance.

My first foray was a symmetry provocation.  Without explicitly defining symmetry, I put out a set of books which they flocked to.  Check out the books below!  The kids quickly picked up the concept and the center became a hit!

Symmetry provocations in first grade.  A great idea for symmetry centers!

If it's not clear, I put a thin layer of sand in a baking tin and added a small mirror.  I held up the mirror with one hand and made a design in the sand with the other.  The kids thought that it was the coolest thing looking at the reflection in the mirror!

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Pegs and Pegboards
I got a bucket of pegs and a set of pegboards from a clearance center when I first started teaching.  Like most teachers would, I had to buy it because it was a great deal!  The small pegs and pegboards (4x6 inches) came from a local dollar store.  I challenged my students to make symmetrical designs or pictures. 

Symmetry centers in first grade.  Fun with pegs and peg boards!

Pattern Blocks
I was excited to try some symmetry activities created by my friend Christina over at Hanging Around in Primary.  They completed a design to make it symmetrical and made their own symmetrical designs.  In the past I put out a tub of Lego and gave kids a straw to use as the line of symmetry. 

Symmetry centers in first grade.  Fun with pattern blocks.

Butterfly Art
In grade one (first grade), paint makes everything better!  These were super easy and quick - a few drops on one side of the butterfly, press down and voilà! 

Math Journals
For their journal entries, I asked students to create both symmetrical and non-symmetrical designs and find the line of symmetry in letters of the alphabet. 

These pages are part of my resource: Open-Ended Math Questions - Geometry.

I hope that you found new ideas to try with your own kiddos! 

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