7 Ideas for Teaching Congruent Triangles

Congruent triangles is one of my favorite units to teach.  I love using activities that help students practice with congruent triangles and proofs.  There are some awesome resources for teaching triangle congruence and you don't even need worksheets!  Here are my 7 favorite ideas and tips for a triangle congruence unit.

Teaching Congruent Triangles Tips

1.  Use Foldables - This congruent triangles foldable is so helpful for my students to refer to throughout the unit.  It keeps all of the information in one location so that it's quick and easy for them.  I love interactive notebook pages for congruent triangles!

2.  Use Cut and Paste Activities - Anytime students can physically manipulate items they will be more engaged (and retain more!).  I love using cut and paste activities because students are more likely to jump in and not be afraid to make a mistake.  If you want to have students work in groups, this cut and paste sorting activity is fun to have students do on a giant poster.  My proofs cut and paste activities are a great way for students to practice proofs without pressure.

3.  Use Videos to Illustrate - Using videos can be a good way to engage some students and can help break up long class periods in a productive way.  They're also a great activity for a sub day!  This video is a nice explanation of all of the triangle congruence theorems.  This video does a great job of explaining the SSA false shortcut.  WARNING:  It is incredibly boring. (I still show it every year.)

4.  Use Task Cards and Digital Activities - Students need sooo much practice with congruent triangles.  I like to use task cards to practice the triangle congruence theorems and task cards to practice triangle congruence proofs.  If students have access to technology, it can be fun to give them a digital activity too.  This digital activity practices congruent triangles proofs.

5.  Require Students to Mark Diagrams - For a lot of my students, getting them to mark their diagrams is like pulling teeth.  However, students that mark them always seem to do better on tests and quizzes.  I wonder if there is a correlation there...  For congruent triangles, I have my students mark the diagram, but also mark A or S, depending on if it is a side or angle that is congruent.  I find that actually writing it out helps them eventually determine the correct triangle congruence shortcut.

6.  Have Students Practice What ISN'T Needed - Once students have a pretty good grasp on the shortcuts, it's good to give them information and have them determine what isn't needed.  I like to use this extra information activity so students can work together and sort the cards into the correct categories.

7.  Have Students Re-Draw Overlapping Triangles - Many students struggle visualizing overlapping triangles.  If they re-draw the diagrams, they usually do better.  This activity can help students see the different common types of overlapping triangles.

I hope these ideas help in your next congruent triangles unit.  It's one of my favorites in geometry!

1 comment

1. I love the "Have Students Practice What ISN'T Needed" and "What additional information is needed". I've always asked these questions but never thought of making them a formal activity. Nice article

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