Information. history. Alternative. Remark. The Paper- Folding - Problem.
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Remark
The Paper-Folding-Problem
A sheet of usual rectangular typing paper (A4) is halved by folding it parallel to the shorter edge. The resulting double sheet can be halved again by folding parallel to the shorter edge and so on.After nfoldings the corners of the resulting stack of paper sheets are cut off. By unfolding the paper, it will be detectable that (for n > 1) a mat with holes has resulted.
Find out and explain a connection between the number n of foldings and the number A(n) of holes in the paper.
In most states of Germany fifth graders are gathered in new classes and new schools. The lesson should be taught in the middle of the first term in grade 5. At this time most pupils have adjusted to the new environment, to new teachers and new classmates. Experiences from the primary school might still have some impact.
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Information abouttheclasstobeselected
Which class do you want to teach?
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How important are the following goals for your coming lesson?
very
not
a little
rather
The pupils should be able to
detect the number of holes for the next cut-folding
detect the number of holes for the folding-cuts of higher orders
give reasons for a rule to determine the number of holes in the paper
find conjectures
give reasons for conjectures and relations
Identify and use structures
to follow the explanations of the teacher precisely
to investigate the problem independently
to enjoy working mathematically
to stand also frustrations when working mathematically
If there should be another important goal, please click here
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Before teaching the folding problem, do you want to prepare the class by teaching one of the following problems ?
“Paper-strip-problem” (Formulation not for pupils)
Take a sufficient long paper-strip. Halve the length of the strip by folding it parallel to the smaller side and repeat this type of folding for n times. Finally, make a triangular cut at the edge without the two “free ends” of the paper-stack and unfold it. You get a strip with holes. The pupils should figure out a relation between the number A(n) of holes and the number of foldings.
You train with your pupils the detection and construction of arithmetical patterns by investigating possible continuation of number sequences.
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How would you like to present the problem to the pupils ?
The pupils investigate the first folding guided by the teacher
The teacher presents some foldings to the pupils. Then they get some task to work on
The teacher presents the problem-text without any comments to the pupils
The teacher presents the problem to the pupils by demonstrating the folding procedure
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history
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How would you like to present the problem to the pupils ?
The pupils investigate the first folding guided by the teacher
The teacher presents some foldings to the pupils. Then they get some task to work on
The teacher presents the problem-text without any comments to the pupils
The teacher presents the problem to the pupils by demonstrating the folding procedure
The teacher makes demonstrations until the
folding
To fix the results
a table is used (at the black board or on the work sheet
papers which were already worked on, are fixed at the black board
a figure is made at the black board
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Assignment for the pupils
Make a table and put your results in it as far as possible
secondbranch
Figure out the number of holes after the next folding without cutting off the corners.
Make a figure how the paper would look like after the next folding-cut
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collaboration
disturbance
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End of the problem solving session
Many pupils rise their hands very vivid and loud:
Sandra: * I am sure there will be 18 holes in the paper*
Andrea: * There will be 6 holes additionally, but now 3 left and right, respectively.*
Fabian: *I have the same opinion as Andrea*
The pupils don’t have more conjectures.
The 5th folding is carried out together and the result is compared with the conjectures of the pupils. But the pupils do not have an approach for an argument for the number of holes, they gained by action.
There is no more motivation to continue this work.
motivation
collaboration
disturbance
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Comparison selected goals and pupils’ learning and teachers’ instruction arrangements outcomes
Comparison selected goals and estimation of pupils’ learning results and teacher’s arrangement of instruction
The pupils should be able to
detect the number of holes for the next cut-folding
very
rather
detect the number of holes for the folding-cuts of higher orders
rather
give reasons for a rule to determine the number of holes in the paper
find conjectures
very
give reasons for conjectures and relations
rather
Identify and use structures
rather
to follow the explanations of the teacher precisely
a little
to investigate the problem independently
very
very
to enjoy working mathematically
to stand also frustrations when working mathematically
rather
consistency
Richness of problem investigations
flexibility
disturbance
convergence
back
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Howthepupilsshouldworktogether?
group-work
partner-work
single-work
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The pupils work out the next folding
motivation
collaboration
disturbance
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The pupils put the number of holes they figured out into the table.
There are a lot of difficulties when tackling the 6th folding. Cutting the folded paper can only.beperformed by considerable effort . In many cases the paper-stack falls into pieces because the pupils cut off corners which are too large.
Many pupils don’t know how to continue their work. Some start to become nervous , start to do something else or repeat the same folding they had done already.
Possible reactions of the teacher
The pupils continue their present work. The teacher is roaming from one group to another and might give little hints
motivation
collaboration
The present work is interrupted
disturbance
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End of the problem solving session
Many pupils are disappointed because they don’t succeed in doing the 6th folding.
Especially some boys compete in doing the 7th folding.
It is very difficult for the pupils to develop reasonable conjectures, there is no more motivation to continue the work on the problem.
motivation
collaboration
disturbance
Information
history
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Comparison selected goals and pupils’ learning and teachers’ instruction arrangements outcomes
The pupils should be able to
detect the number of holes for the next cut-folding
very
rather
detect the number of holes for the folding-cuts of higher orders
rather
give reasons for a rule to determine the number of holes in the paper
find conjectures
very
give reasons for conjectures and relations
rather
Identify and use structures
rather
to follow the explanations of the teacher precisely
a little
to investigate the problem independently
very
very
to enjoy working mathematically
to stand also frustrations when working mathematically
a little
consistency
Richness of problem investigations
flexibility
disturbance
convergence
back