11 April 2007

RightStart Geometry

The continuing saga of our adventures using RightStart Geometry and RightStart B. I have an 11yo and a 7yo who have average math ability.The 11yo has done Miquon, Singapore, RightStart Transitions, Level D and Level E; RightStart has saved her from a life a math phobia.

I try to update our adventures on Tuesdays, although sometimes it doesn’t get done until Wednesday. And sometimes we really haven’t done that much math, so I skip it entirely.

RightStart Geometry:

Lesson 111 Sierpinski Triangle

Introduces much history of geometry -- Euclid and the Elements, Benoit Mandelbrot and The Fractal Geometry of Nature, and , of course, Waclaw Sierpinski and The Sierpinski Triangle. I don’t know if Kid1 caught the point of all of this history -- I wouldn’t have at her age. Then again, she has a more subtle mind than I (this isn’t saying much).

The worksheets ask for three iterations of the Sierpinski Triangle.

Lesson 112 Koch Snowflake

We both hit a snag on worksheet 1. Kid1 is able to easily draw iterations of the Koch Snowflake, but the algorithm to figure out the perimeter escapes her. She is able to graph out what will happen to the permimeter and area -- the “analysis” section of the book pretty much lays that out -- but doesn’t get how to put the perimeters into numbers. I peek at the answers. I discover that each perimeter is to be multiplied by 4/3 to find the next iteration. Well, how the heck would I have known that? I’m totally clueless as to how we were supposed to figure that out. Really. The only thing I can think of is that the Sierpinski Triangle in lesson 111 had each iteration shaded 3/4 more, so maybe those numbers should’ve been on my mind? Huh? I should email RightStart and ask them.

Lesson 113 Cotter Tens Fractal

Yes, it’s the fractal we all know and love from Level B and/or Transitions -- the Cotter Tens. If you’re new to RightStart, don’t worry -- this is a snap. Cotter Tens are all about powers of ten. You get to play around with really big numbers, like quadrillions. Kid1 is fascinated by really big numbers; I suspect this is common at this age.

Lesson 114 SImilar Triangles

Blessedly short, the point of this lesson is that two triangles are similar if two corresponding angles are equal. They may be different sizes, but they are similar.

It’s the sort of lesson that shows up on Are You Smarter Than a Fifth Grader (which should be re-done as Are You Smarter Than a Homeschool Mom, let’s face it).

Lesson 115 Gractions on the Multiplication Table

Another lesson with quick-to-complete worksheets. Kid1 did the worksheets in various colors of ink pens; she said the variety of colors helped her keep track of what she was doing (drawing squares around various boxes on the multiplication table).

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