Educational activities related to Hinged Dissections: Swinging & Twisting

Lesson plan based on a hinged dissection

Breaking Away from the Mathbook: Creative Projects for K-8
Pat Baggett and Andrzej Ehrenfeucht have posted a lesson plan based on the swing-hinged dissection of the equilateral triangle to the square. Triangle to square: A hinged dissection I especially like the way the hinges are incorporated into the design, using the thick foam rubber that makes up the pieces. Nifty! And the animations on the webpage are really effective, too.

Student activities based on the book

Kearsarge Regional Middle School
April 2003: Every spring, Kim Sharp, a middle school mathematics teacher, designs a project called "Geometry Playtime" in which each student in his pre-algebra class builds a model, a game, or a display of some geometric curiosity. The 6th graders are then invited over to view the results. After reading my book, Kim decided to have the projects in 2003 be based on hinged dissections of squares.
Click here to see the results!

Use of a hinged dissection in discussing a proof

Clark Wells, a mathematics professor at Grand Valley State University, presented his paper
"Quadrature, the Geometric Mean, Hinged Dissections, and the Purpose of Proof"
at the MAA's Mathfest in Hartford, CT on August 2, 2013.
Click here to find out more.

Student presentation of the paper in a math science class in Israel

Ronza Sahouri, a student at the Academic Arab College of Education in Haifa, Israel, presented my paper in a math science class on December 14, 2014.
"i was reading your article:"designing a table both swinging and stable" and i am very intrested about it and i am going to presenting this to my class"

Another student presentation of "Designing a Table both Swinging and Stable"

Ashley Herman, a mathematics major at Ashland University in Ashland, Ohio, gave a presentation of my article, "Designing a Table both Swinging and Stable", in the series "Math 450 Presents" at 1:40pm, on Tuesday, December 8, 2015 in Patterson 301 on the Ashland campus.

As described in Ashland University's "MATH/CS NEWS":
"In an article from the September 2008 edition of The College of Mathematics Journal, Greg N. Frederickson analyzes Howard Eves' physical approach to designing a table both swinging and stable. The physical construction of this table was based off of Henry E. Dudeney/Charles W. McElroy's geometric dissection discovery in 1902. The idea behind this discovery was to transform an equilateral triangle to a square using hinged dissection.

"Frederickson takes us through the history and thought process behind this idea as well as the difficulties faced by these men as they constructed this design. He also takes into account the improvements that needed to be made and those that have been made to the overall design. Who knew the construction of only one table could yield two entirely different shapes? By the end of this presentation you'll be tempted to build this geometrically savvy table yourself!"

Last updated January 27, 2016.