Geodesic Gumdrop Exploration, 3/2/2011
Nearing the end of our geometry unit, I planned this inquiry-based activity for the students to explore the properties of 3D solids. The focus question of the inquiry was whether squares (and thus cubes) or triangles (and thus pyramids) make for sturdier structures. The students worked with in pairs to construct geometric solids using gumdrops and toothpicks, and then to test the strength of their structures. The students had so much fun during the exploration, that near the end when I asked the students to wrap it up and get ready to gather to share when they had learned, I overheard one student exclaim "What we learned? This wasn't learning, this was play!" Ahh, the joys of inquiry learning.