Using a Protractor

Take one part geometry, one part riddle, and one part partner work and what do you have?  A little gem of an activity.

We have entered into our Geometry unit and started looking at angles and their measurements.  I wanted to give the kids some hands-on use of the protractors, but also some fun.  So, I came up with this little activity that the kid really, really loved.

First, we talked about angles and their measurements.  Using their math notebooks, we created a few samples and had a little hands on exploration with actual protractors.

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Then, once that was done, for a little extra practice,  I gave the kids this little printable (ok, worksheet...but printable sounds so much better, doesn't it??) with a whole bunch of protractors on it.  I wanted the students to really think about what they were doing so for each angle I asked them to list the following:












math, 5th grade blog, 4th grade blog, upper grade blog1.  What type of angle is it?  acute or obtuse
2.  Knowing the angle type, will it be greater or less than 90 degrees?
3.  Next, looking at the protractor, what are the two angle degrees that it could be (based on where the arrow is pointing)
4.  Choose the correct angle degree and circle it.










The kids did this for every.single.problem.  Tedious?  Yes.  Time consuming? Yes.  Get the most out of the printable so the kids are able to justify why they are choosing the angle measurement?  YES.

I had them work in partners on this, which made the assignment seem extra fun.  Then, they solved the riddle and, viola, protractor practice complete.

Click here to get the printable to use in your own room.  

What are some things you have done to get your kid interested in math AND practicing the skill at hand? 


20 comments

  1. I love this! It will be super helpful when I revisit protractors and angles with my 4ths!

    :) Kaitlyn
    Smiles and Sunshine

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    1. Oh good! So glad you will be able to use it :)

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  2. I have my students follow the EXACT same steps. And it is tedious, but I think that they really must know what type of angle it is first. Thanks for sharing.

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  3. I LOVE YOU! We just did a unit on this and my 5s are having a hard time with the protractors. This.Is.Fabulous.

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  4. aaaaa!!! My eyes were drooping and I was about to fall asleep when I saw this post pop up in my blog roll! I thought ANGLES! STEPHANIE! I knew it would be brilliant :)

    We just started taking notes on measuring angles today and this will be PERFECT for tomorrow. Thank you so, so much!

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  5. Thanks guys! Protractors and angle measurements sure do seem to be hard for them sometimes...those darn double measurements on the protractors!

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  6. Stephanie, this is fabulous!! Thanks so much for sharing! I will definitely be doing this with my kiddos!!

    Molly
    Lessons with Laughter

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  7. I came back to say thanks again! We did this in partners this afternoon and it was great! My students had a lot of fun and it reiterated what we've been discussing--making observations about whether the angle is acute or obtuse and if the angle measure makes sense in this regard. Thanks Stephanie!!

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    1. Glad it worked out!!! Yay!!! (and thanks for coming back to tell me about it :) )

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  8. Thanks. I will be using this for review later in the year. My 5s just finished our angle unit with the assessment being an art project/study. Here is a link to the project. It was so engaging!

    http://learninginhand.com/storage/pda/lessonplans/angles.html

    We skipped the technology part as our resources were limited and just estimated and checked angles using the artwork from the powerpoint which I imported as a PDF into my interactive white board. The kids traced the angles in the paintings and recorded an estimate and actual measure. The used the interactive protractor to measure, and also their own. They then used these angles to create their own abstract art. They traded papers and made a chart of estimated angles, actual angle measurements, and type of angle.

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    1. OOOOHHHHHH....that is a great project! Just what I am looking for for my math workshop. Thank you for sharing Krista!

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  9. I teach Kindergarten, but I LOVE upper el geometry because I love solving the number riddle. Looks like so much fun! I'm also participating in Charity's giveaway so I wanted to stop by and say "hi!"

    Maria
    Kinder-Craze

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  10. I've been using pretzel sticks for each of the kids to create/classify/measure different kinds of triangles,quadralaterals,horizontal parallel segments, angles etc... include a mini-marshmallow for learning the voc word vertex. I use my document camera to shine my pretzel shape and protractor on the white board. Students come up to demonstrate how to find measurement. They love the activity and enjoy having to "bite off" the pretzels to create isosceles triangles or other changes. I look forward to using this printout as a good follow-up. Thanks for all your great resources. LOVE YOUR SPIRAL MATH!

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  11. Thank you for this activity! We used it today and it was great. I think next year I will use it to also introduce complementary angles with some of my higher kids.

    Thanks again!

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  12. Thanks, this is great! I had them writing down on my own sheet the classification, then each angle it -could- be, then circling the one it was. They are definitely getting it! I do have a suggestion on the printable. I don't know if I just printed it wrong, but I used it as homework, and the students weren't able to read the numbers. They were able to estimate though, based on where 90 is and having the riddle to solve helped. Just wanted to let you know!

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  13. This is awesome. Thank you! I will use it on Wednesday.

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  14. We start geometry in a week. This will be perfect! Thanks for sharing.

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  15. I just did angles with my low 3rd graders. They love the Dr Seuss Angle Song, and we do some exercising with our bodies (as I call out the 4 types--making a squeaky small voice AKA cute or low loud voice AKA Obese-- they have to make it with their arms) Today they made angle monsters (open mouths) and decorated them with teeth and eyes, then they made talking bubbles to say things like, "Aren't I such an acute monster?" My favorite was that all the right angles ended up with glasses and straight teeth, some with braces and pony-tails saying, "I'm always right."

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    1. They also had to measure the angles with protractors and write the degree inside the tongue!

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