Skip to main content

Maths - In the spotlight

Symmetry and area invaders

Symmetry and area invaders

What is it?

TESiboard has come up with a winning resource that combines setting areas and creating symmetrical patterns with the rewards of an arcade-style game.

How does it work?

The activity sets pupils the challenge of arranging squares to form the shape of a "space invader" creature. The total number of squares that they use must reach a specified target area. There are lots of options for differentiation making for a truly inclusive lesson that pupils will be raving about for days. The options include "starter", which uses only whole units and has areas of even total numbers; "learner", which includes half-shapes, but still asks for an even area number; and "expert", which involves odd area totals, forcing pupils to use half-unit shapes. There is a choice of making one, two or three invaders and using a line of symmetry that goes vertically, horizontally or diagonally.

What else?

Once the invaders have been made to meet the target area criteria, pupils get the chance to manipulate a second frame of each of their invaders in order to produce a simple animated movement. They then play a version of the classic arcade game using their shape animations.

Try it out and tell us what you think.

Find all resources and links at

Log in or register for FREE to continue reading.

It only takes a moment and you'll get access to more news, plus courses, jobs and teaching resources tailored to you