Jennifer Belisle recently turned her Geometry in Construction class at Brewer High School into an inflatable classroom, and students learned about volume (measurable space inside a figure) from inside an inflatable 3D figure.
"We spend so much time in a 2D world coming out of Algebra 1, that students struggle to understand 3D figures have space inside of them," said Belisle.
Before inflating the "plastic classroom," students practiced finding area using length and width. Then they inflated the plastic with a fan, entered the 3D classroom, and developed formulas for the volume of pyramids and cones.
"During a normal day, we will study a geometry skill and then apply the skill to a variety of construction-based scenarios," she said.
Students use the blueprint of a cabin-style home to review the area and perimeter of polygons. They discuss area in relation to installing floor and perimeter relative to base molding.
Students use a miter saw to discover complimentary angles. They used the saws to cut 45 degree angles and then create a perfect square.
Students also partnered with the Tech Theater class to frame and sheet the risers for the upcoming play. The students used their understanding of rectangles and diagonals to accurately construct the frame of each riser.
The class is a double blocked course in which students receive both the required math credit as well as a construction credit.