Friday Fave for August 18

Des-Patterns may be the only Desmos activity designed with physical manipulatives (so far).

Whether you’re a modern-day quilter, a 17th-century French mathematician, or a five-year old at the Minnesota State Fair, the allure of a square—cut on the diagonal and colored—is irresistible.

In Des-Patterns, students manipulate electronic versions of these tiles and use the rules of algebra to do so.

First they translate.


They they reflect.


In the end, students have developed their spatial visualization skills, gotten an introduction to coordinate rules for simple transformations in the plane, and built their own designs for their classmates to add on to.

That’s a lot of mathy, creative goodness to derive from the humble square. Which is what makes Des-Patterns this week’s Friday Fave.

While you’re thinking about the plane, here are three more activities having to do with Cartesian coordinates…

Battle Boats

Mini-Golf Marbleslides

Polygraph: Points