. Regurgitated Alpha Bits: Gee-Momma-Tree

Sunday, March 23, 2008


We have been studying geometry as of late. It is mostly vocabulary at this stage of the game, and therefore a challenge for my class of 4th grade second language learners. I haven't been getting the impression they are retaining a whole lot of it. I was pretty sure I needed to do some reteaching.

To test their general knowledge so far, I asked them each to do a circle map about polygons. A circle map is a brainstorming tool that looks like a giant donut. The topic gets written in the center and all the information a students can recall goes in the larger circle.

In all honesty, they knew quite a bit more than I had anticipated. (That is not necessarily a good thing.) Here are a few highlights:

A polygon is a many sided figurine.

A circle is not a polygon but I think it should be.

I have a cousin named Poly.

Quadrilaterals have 4 sides. They got their name from the quads you ride in the desert with 4 wheels.

Geemommatree is about shapes.

Line segments have endpoints. Lines go on and on forever. I don't think anything can go on and on forever though. That's impossible. Do teachers sometimes make stuff up?

There are many kinds of triangles. Way more than I knew about before. I can't even remember all their names.

Tri means 3, angle means angle, quad means 4, and rilateral means wheels.
(Gee, can you guess what example I might have used for "quad"?)

Polygon does not mean your parrot is missing.

A pararalllelleloagram (actual spelling) looks like a tippy rectangle.

I learned about rectangles in kindergarten. I feel I'm ready to move on.
(Ah... "Ready to move on" is ripped right from the Ms. Lee language playbook. He IS listening!)

And now for my all-time favorite. Drumroll please!

Since we're studying polygons, shouldn't we be making a square map instead of a circle map?

Now, SHE gets it.


Ms. Longhorn said...

Haha yes! I LOVE IT! Great post :)

Edna Lee said...

Why, thank you very much! I just love kid-quotes. They are, at times, very insightful.

Mister Teacher said...

Great timing! My column on education.com this Tuesday is going to be called "Stop! It's a hexagon!" And it's all about my kids' confusion with geometry and shapes.

Edna Lee said...

Well, you know what they say: Great minds...teach geometry to people under the age of 10.

Wamblings said...

hahaha, I read this aloud to my son and so reading your post generated double laughter this time.