Three subject teachers recommend a high-quality resource, available on the TES website, that they have tried and tested in their own classrooms
How do you construct a 50p?
What is it? What shape is a 50p piece? A heptagon, right? Actually, no. On closer inspection, the edges are curved, making the coin a reuleaux heptagon. This shape has a fascinating property: each diameter is the same width and yet the shape is not a circle. This worksheet from the British Museum looks at the reuleaux heptagon and asks students to construct their own 50p pieces.
How can it be used? As suggested in the worksheet, you can leave the task completely open-ended, or go as far as to show the completed 50p diagram to the students to see if they can recreate it with a compass, a ruler and an angle measurer. The worksheet also suggests follow-up questions that will prompt students to look more closely at the shape's properties. Before you know it, you will be discussing symmetry, tangents, similarity and much more, after refining those all-important loci and construction skills.
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