Update (6/14/2017): The size of this pdf has more than tripled! If you've already purchased and downloaded, be sure to grab an updated copy!
This would make a fabulous STEM activity to end the school year...especially if your school has banned fidget spinners! On the day that I announced that we would be using fidget spinners for a math activity, I learned that the gadgets were now banned. I started from scratch, making a new activity to inspire students...this time, with tops that THEY create!
In this STEM assignment, students make paper tops. As they work, they describe what they notice about the shapes they are creating. Then, they conduct test spins and graph the data. Finally, they choose a variable to change, collect a second set of data, and compare the two.
The pdf contains:
- step-by-step teacher directions with images, including suggestions for related math vocabulary
- student directions
- student sheets: mathematical observations, mathematical vocabulary, designing TOP art, data collection record sheets, graphs, examples
A sample video of spinning tops
can be found on my website.
I have guided children as young as seven in making the tops. In a classroom the entire process is best utilized in the later half of third grade and beyond. If you are using this with younger students, feel free to omit calculations for range, mean, median, and mode.
You might also enjoy these math products:
Task Cards or Scoot: Egg Carton Fractions Addition
Skittles Fractions, Estimation, and Graphing
Flap Books "Present" Multiples and Factors
Task Cards or Scoot: Multiply and Divide Decimals and Whole Numbers by Powers of 10
Flap Books "Present" Powers of 10 (Multiply and Divide Whole Numbers and Decimals by 10)
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