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Math Fun: Natural Geometry

Math shouldn't be something a person is scared of. Its part of everyday life. Its visible in the natural world around us. This makes a nice activity to introduce some of the concept of geometry in a fun and non-threatening way.

This fun exercise is both a nature study activity and a geometry lesson. You'll need to search out a spider web. Finding spiderwebs is usually easier in the morning when dew would still be on the web.

Spders are some of nature's best weavers. Weaving often uses geometric shapes to create beautiful patterns. Look at the webs that different kinds of spiders make. Do they all have the same pattern to them?

Collect different spider web patterns using the direction from any of the following websites:

http://chainreaction.asu.edu/desert/trythis/spiderweb.htm
http://sprott.physics.wisc.edu/pickover/mygal.html
http://www.ontariohomeschool.org/Feb01HRselection.html
http://www.greatscopes.com/act003.htm
http://www.backyardwildlifehabitat.info/preservingweb.htm


While following any of the above activities, make sure that the spider is no longer in the web. Spiders play a very important role in our environment and we don't won't to kill one out of carelessness.

Once you have collected three or four spider webs, compare them. What is the same? What is different? What kind of shapes or patterns can you find in each web?

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