You can make so many designs and images with simple shapes, and when you create your own geometric tiles to work with, it’s even more fun! These triangle shapes are like the wooden manipulatives you might find in a pre-k or primary classroom, only bigger.
All you need to make these pieces are a few elementary supplies, then add creativity to start constructing giant patterns and designs!
Working with basic shapes to form patterns or create other familiar items is so good for your brain. It’s both relaxing to move the pieces around and challenging as you try to see what you can make. It can even function as a puzzle!
what you need:
- Craft Sticks (we used the jumbo size)
- Craft Glue
- Apple Barrel Acrylic Paint
- Paint Brush
- Printable Mosaic Patterns
Arrange three craft sticks in a triangle and glue to the ends to hold them together. Repeat this to make as many triangle tiles as you want.
Tip: If the triangles have trouble staying together as the glue dries, try holding the corners with clothespins for 15 minutes or so.
After the glue dries, paint the triangles in several bright colors. It will probably take two coats of paint. You can paint just one side or both! If you paint carefully, you could even paint the two sides in different colors.
Instead of paint, you could also leave them plain or dye them.
After the paint is dry, sort out the colors of triangles and get ready to make some designs!
Start by exploring the way these triangles interact with each other and how they form other shapes, like a hexagon. See what you can build with them.
When you’re ready for more inspiration, print the Triangle Mosaic Patterns PDF from the supply list on card stock. Cut the cards apart and then match the designs.
Because the triangle tiles are so large, it’s best to lay these shapes on a large table or even the floor.
You can also make a game of it. Write down some familiar objects (flower, heart, dog, etc.), have someone choose one to make from the shapes, and then see if someone can guess what it is!
If you’re a teacher, you can make a large set of these for your classroom or let your students get involved. They’ll love being part of making manipulatives to share or even take home.