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Rebecca R. Robichaux and Paulette R. Rodrigue

Sorting shapes and solving riddles develop and advance children's geometric thinking and understanding while promoting mathematical communication, cooperative learning, and numerous representations.

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Rebecca R. Robichaux and Paulette R. Rodrigue

Starting with the Dinner Table problem and extending to other geometric examples, students become familiar with patterns and functions as well as graphing concepts.

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Rebecca R. Robichaux and Paulette R. Rodrigue

Deep in the heart of southern Louisiana's Cajun country, middle school students enter a mathematics classroom. They hear Cajun music playing in the background and observe cattails and cypress knees “growing” along the bottom of the classroom walls. Foam crawfish lie on plastic bayous on the tables around the room. The room is filled with excitement for what is about to occur. These students begin to question each other, and ask: “Is this math?” “Perhaps we're going to skip math and do social studies?” “Maybe we are going to learn how to do a Cajun line dance?”

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Rebecca R. Robichaux and Paulette R. Rodrigue

Rigami has been used frequently in teaching geometry to promote the development of spatial sense; to make multicultural connections with mathematical ideas; and to provide students with a visual representation of such geometric concepts as shape, properties of shapes, congruence, similarity, and symmetry. Such activities meet the Geometry Standard (NCTM 2000), which states that students should be engaged in activities that allow them to “analyze characteristics and properties of twoand three-dimensional geometric shapes and develop mathematical arguments about geometric relationships” and to “use visualization, spatial reasoning, and geometric modeling to solve problems” (p. 41). This article begins with an explanation of the importance of communication in the mathematics classroom and then describes a middle school mathematics lesson that uses origami to meet both the Geometry Standard as well as the Communication Standard.