by Cynthia Lanius

Pinwheel Directions-Rotations

  1. With the circle tool, construct a circle.
  2. With the segment tool, construct two radii and a chord, forming an acute triangle.
  3. With the select tool, select the three vertices of the triangle. (Hold the shift key.) From Construct Menu, construct the polygon interior.
  4. Select the center of the circle. From the Transform Menu, mark center.
  5. Select the center and the triangle. From the Transform Menu, rotate. At the rotate window, rotate by 60. OK.
  6. From the Transform Menu, rotate again by 60. until there are 6 triangles.
  7. Make sure a triangle is selected and from Display Menu click on a color.
  8. Repeat step 7 until all the triangles are colored different colors.
  9. Select both the circle and one of the vertices of the original triangle (not the center of the circle).
  10. From the Edit Menu, select ACTION Button, then animation. Then click animate at the animation window. (One way or bi-directional is something you can play with later.)
  11. Now double click on the animate button that should have appeared on the sketch.

Translate the Pinwheels Horizontally

  1. Select the whole figure by drawing a box around it.
  2. From the Transform Menu choose translate. From the Translate Window choose Rectangular Vector and Horizontal Component 2 inches and Vertical Component 0 inches. OK. (Adjust # inches depending on the size of your figure).
  3. Double click on the Animate Button.

Reflect the Pinwheels

  1. With the segment tool, construct a horizontal line below the figures.
  2. With the line selected, go to Transform Menu and mark mirror.
  3. Select both figures by drawing a box around them; select the line also; (holding the Shift key) and then from the Transform menu choose reflect.
  4. Double click the animate button again. Everything's turning. Hide any lines you don't like.

Questions to Explore

  1. How will the figure differ if you rotate the triangle at 45 degrees instead of 60? How about at 30?
  2. Investigate rotating a quadrilateral to form your pinwheel rather than a triangle.
  3. Try a dilation on one of the pinwheels (Also under the Transform Menu).