Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Latest Hair-Brained Project Preview

I have many, many math manipulatives, which I acquire primarily through the trash.  At the end and beginning of every school year, as teachers are forced to change rooms, many teachers throw away things that are not useful to themselves.  For instance, in something I consider almost a crime, I tossed many books that I used last year for independent reading.  This year, my room is a fraction of the size of my room last year (literally a fraction, and smaller than a third) and I do not have the space to keep them.  That, and, as many of you remember from this blog, the students did not exactly take the best care of them.  In any case, last year, I saw a social studies teacher throwing away some math manipulatives, and when I said I was going to pull them from the trash, he showed me two entire closets of manipulatives that he was going to dispose of next.  Well, I got out my handy little cart (that I also took from the garbage), and I hauled those things out of there. 

I took the blocks to
make something akin
to this.
So, one of the things I gained from this instance of good-timing was many, many, many wooden cubes.  They are provided in a kit, and since I have snap cubes, which, in contrast to the kit blocks, stay together when the students are building rectangular prisms, I do not use the wooden blocks.  But, never fear, I of course had a plan for the rejects.  The idea originally involved building a mono-chromatic version of something along the lines of the picture to the left, but when I wanted to show my daughter my vision, I googled "block art".  Well, let me tell you, there is a whole host of new ways I can take this.  Below, I've posted some of my inspirational pieces.  A quart or two of wood glue, some graph paper templates, a spray or two of paint, and a lot of time and patience, and my latest masterpiece shall be revealed.  These projects keep me sane, I swear.  Some could argue that they keep me just on the safe side of the cuckoo dividing line.  Without my cockamamie schemes, life would be dreary and monotonous.  So, now I'm excited!


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