Geometric Puzzles

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Henri Picciotto

My first projects as a curriculum developer came out of my interest in recreational math, especially geometric puzzles. This turned out to have a big impact, directly or indirectly, on almost all subsequent writing. Here are some links.

Free on this site

Geometric Puzzles in the Classroom is my main article on this topic.

Puzzles in Math Education provides a philosophical framework.

Web pages and PDFs
Pentominoes
Pentomino Labs
Three-Pentomino Puzzles
Simultaneous Pentomino Rectangles
One-inch graph paper (useful for pentomino puzzles)
Other
Polyomino rectangles
Supertangram Labs
Tearing tangrams
Rep-tiles
Map Coloring
Cutting Out Hearts, by Katherine Paur
Geometric puzzle books
Polyomino Lessons
Supertangram books
Geometry Labs is not exactly a puzzle book, but it includes many puzzles.
Laser cutter file
If you have access to a laser cutter, you can make your own pentominoes. (The file was created by Eben LaPier.) The advantage of laser-cut pentominoes over the commercially available ones is that the pieces are not subdivided into squares. Thus, when you've solved a puzzle, you can see what you did. With the commercially available pentominoes, all you see is in a solved puzzle is its subdivision into squares, which is useless.

Not free

Supertangrams ($4/set, plus shipping and handling — e-mail me)

Elsewhere

Pentomino Activities, Lessons and Puzzles a classic from the 1980's, (going out of print, but possibly still available from mheducation.com, item # 0884883744)

Working with Pentominoes (from didax.com) — book and ebook which can be projected and includes onscreen manipulable pentominoes.

Geometry Labs Drawing Template (from enasco.com) Useful for rep-tile explorations, tiling, and more.

Zome Geometry (from Zometool), which I co-authored with George Hart, is not exactly a puzzle book, but it includes many puzzles.

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