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        Varieties of Quadrilaterals

        Students learn to classify quadrilaterals, including trapezoids, with a focus on different types of parallelograms. They learn the relationships among rectangles, squares, and rhombuses as different types of parallelograms.

        Lesson Summary


        Bianca's friend Kim brings her a device for reaching objects while she's confined to her bed. The device is made up of collapsible parallelograms. The activity uses this episode to launch an investigation of different kinds of quadrilaterals (parallelograms, trapezoids, rectangles, squares, and rhombi) and the relationships among them.

        Grade Level:


        Suggested Time

        1 hour

        Media Resources

        Skateboarding QuickTime Video


        Classifying Quadrilaterals handout
        Assessment, Level A
        Assessment, Level B
        Answer Key
        Straight edge

        The Lesson

        Part I: Learning Activity

        1. Read the following to your students: "In this lesson, we will be focusing on different types of quadrilaterals. A quadrilateral is a four-sided figure: quad meaning four and lateral (from the Latin word lateris) meaning side. You will watch a video clip in which a number of different types of quadrilaterals appear. Watch the video clip and on a sheet of paper write down each object that appears to be a quadrilateral."

        2. Play the Skateboarding QuickTime Video .

        3. Discuss the different types of quadrilaterals, including rectangles, squares, rhombi, trapezoids, and parallelograms. In dealing with the device that Bianca uses to extend her reach, discuss how the shape of parallelograms can be changed to form different quadrilaterals, without changing the lengths of the sides of the quadrilaterals.

        4. Distribute the Classifying Quadrilaterals handout .

        5. Ask students to complete the handout, and then review student answers.

        Part II: Assessment

        Assessment, Level A (proficiency): Students decide if certain relationships among quadrilaterals are true or false.

        Assessment, Level B (above proficiency): Students are asked to draw quadrilaterals to satisfy certain conditions. Students should use protractors and rulers to create accurate shapes.


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