The mathematics resources group's December Mathematician, George Polya, worked in many areas of mathematics. His work on plane symmetry and tiling inspired Escher to produce his wonderful tiling patterns.
This list of resources is designed to provide inspiration when teaching symmetry.
Click here to link to a list of resources designed to provide inspiration when teaching tesselations
Links and Resources
Six lesson ideas.
Tile Patterns: investigates symmetry in square and rectangular arrangements of tiles.
Polyominoes . Students are asked to make polyominoes out of 3, 4, 5, and 6 squares and investigate their lines of symmetry.
Mirrors is a problem involving finding where to place a mirror on a starting shape to produce another given shape.
Pegboard Patterns uses colour and spatial arrangements of pegs on a board to produce patterns with one or two lines of symmetry.
Paper Folds shows a shape which has been produced by folding a shape in half along a line of symmetry and asks what the possible starting shapes could have been.
Worms is an activity which involves drawing trails following a rule which can then produce patterns with rotational symmetry.
Looking for symmetry provides an opportunity to
search for symmetry in commercial and other logos.
The Using symmetry worksheet is an exercise in
using symmetrical properties to reproduce
previously designed logos.
Creating a logo gives pupils a free hand in using line and rotational symmetry to create their own logo.
This video resource from Teachers TV contains a number of quick-fire starter questions on: probability, ratio and proportion, rotational symmetry, square numbers and circles.
In Exploring symmetry pupils make models of crystals and explore their rotational symmetry.
Pupils record the numbers of vertices, edges and faces for the crystal shapes from the first activity on the Vertices, edges and faces worksheet to discover Euler's formula V + F – E = 2
This activity enables students to consolidate their knowledge of the properties of two dimensional shapes by working with a variety of stained glass designs. Students may enjoy designing their own suncatchers, considering lines of symmetry and rotational symmetry.
This video resource from Teachers TV investigates the mathematics used by master masons and identifies some hidden symmetry surrounding the columns of the cathedral before challenging students to calculate the circumference of one of the columns, given its diameter. Students are then invited to explore hidden symmetry in their school or local church.