I am going to start teaching slides, flips and turns on Monday. I have never taught this unit before. I have my lesson plans in place, but I'm not sure how to go about introducing this unit. Any ideas, suggestions, books to read, etc.? Thanks for your help.

Are what I use to teach this... however, please be sure you also tell them the correct mathematical terms (translations, reflections, rotations). Even with my second and third graders we use these terms, not "slides, flips, turns" (but that's just me, I have this thing about using correct terminology). Anyway... off that soap box...

I use quilts and/or tessellations. Quilting is especially good, as you can also include 2-D figures, symmetry, we discuss whether the pattern is a translations, reflection or rotation. We also discuss reflectional symmetry and rotational symmetry. Students then create their own quilt squares (we use .5cm graph paper to be sure the designs are exactly the same size and shape).

I found pictures of actual quilt squares and made a PowerPoint of JUST the pictures and as we go through the slides, they tell me figures, symmetry, reflection, rotation, translation, etc. to describe the pattern they see.

I love Escher, so we also bring in tessellations. I have them create their own tessellated pattern.

With my 4th graders, I do a Geometry Dance. I teach them the steps-how I'd move if I were doing a slide (simply sliding one foot in a horizontal, vertical, or diagonal motion and then moving the other foot to join it), a flip (facing one direction, then doing a 180 jump to face the opposite direction), or a turn (one foot stays in place and we rotate 90 degrees for each foot...kind of like a pivot in basketball). I am the "caller" for the dance and they complete the movements as I call them out randomly. I've also played "Teacher Says" instead of "Simon Says" with these movements. The kids really like it, since it gets them active.

I agree with yesteach that quilts are a great hands-on way to teach translation, rotation and reflection.

Attached are the templates for a quilt lesson from Mathwire-there's a page of twelve pieces to cut out for each student, a pattern matching challenge page using the 12 cut-out manipulatives and a 2x2 and 3x3 grid on which to arrange the pieces. You can easily teach flip, turn (eg quarter turn to right /left) and slide with the pieces.

Finally ,children can make their own symmtrical quilt pattern on the 3x3 grid and paste down the pieces. You could display a giant quilt with all the pages on your BB

One of our 7th grade teachers used the electric slide song and used the words, translate, rotate, dilate in the song. The kids had a ball. On the part that says ever body freeze..shed say everyone reflect...they would turn to someone beside them and strike a pose for reflection

She had the music part and sang the other...she'd say Translate to the left, dilate real big, dilate real small, rotate 90 degrees counter clockwise....etc.

It was great. The kids had a ball...we reviewed all the things first..plus the kids knew the song...slide to the right...she'd say translate to the right.

I agree with the earlier post get them use to using the words they will need I would teach them together because I think in the earlier grades they do call them slides, turns, etc.

I'm going to try this with 1st grade. We have pep rallies in the Fall. The little kids get quite good at the dances that the high school cheerleaders do with them while the band plays. Yes, we are they that small. Let you know how they do.