Thursday, December 27, 2018

A Tatsulok Puzzle Template

Several years ago I bought a bunch of science games from a company called Scienterrific Games. One of them was a puzzle called Tatsulok. Tatsulok is a Filipino word meaning triangle. In the puzzle you match question and answer sides of triangles in order to form a giant triangle. Scienterrific Games sells five versions of Tatsulok puzzles.

Just before the semester ended, I needed a couple of review activities for my reactions unit. Some students were struggling with the content and I needed to spend some time to remediate. Meanwhile, I wanted to provide activities for the rest of the students to practice a skill and get instant feedback. Puzzles are great for this, so I used the Balancing Equations Tatsulok that I purchased from Scienterrific Games ($13.95 for two copies). It took most students, working in pairs, about 15 minutes to solve the puzzle. Each side of a triangle had an unbalanced chemical equation or a set of coefficients that would balance an equation. Match them all up to form the big triangle. Most students seemed to enjoy the puzzle and worked independently while I provided extra help to those who needed it.

When I finished the lesson, I started thinking about creating a template for this puzzle. I love puzzles and have made several that I use in my classroom. I decided to try making the template as a Google Drawing. It is available here and looks like this:

The text boxes can all be edited to create a puzzle with 18 questions and answers (or some can be eliminated for a puzzle with fewer questions and answers).  The dimensions of the Google Drawing are 11" x 8.5" so you should be able to print it on a regular sheet of paper as a landscape document. I hope that you can use it to make something fun for your classroom. I'd love to hear what you do with this template!

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