Math = Love: Hidden Animal Puzzlers by Frank Tapson

Wednesday, February 6, 2019

Hidden Animal Puzzlers by Frank Tapson

This year, I am teaching 4 sections of Algebra 2 and 2 sections of Pre-Calculus. Having four sections of one subject is always interesting because I find that keeping four different classes at approximately the same spot in the curriculum to be very challenging. One class is always finishing earlier than the others, requiring creative and quick thinking on my part.

A great resource I have found for engaging early finishers or engaging students on those days when so many students are gone that moving forward with the curriculum is impossible is Frank Tapson's Teacher Resources on Line website. Today's resource I'm sharing comes from his collection of Some Other Lessons.

Image Source: http://www.cleavebooks.co.uk/trol/trolqd.pdf
If you recognize Frank's name on my blog, it's for good reason. He is responsible for creating How Far Can You Climb?, Manifest Game, Skittles Game, Cover Up Game, and the Horizontal Number Line Poster I use in my classroom. 

Recently, the hidden animals puzzle from this file caught my eye. Perhaps because it's directly after How Far Can You Climb? which is always a student favorite. There's absolutely zero math involved in these tiny puzzlers, but they do make the perfect time filler! You could even post one a day as part of a bell ringer or opening activity.

Image Source: http://www.cleavebooks.co.uk/trol/trolqd.pdf (Page 35)
I didn't really want to print off the entire page of 30 puzzles and give them to my students as a formal assignment, so I decided to put them into a more useful format for just tossing up a few of the puzzles at a time as time permitted. I finally settled on creating a Google Slide presentation.


Can you find the hidden animals in the sentences below?



Instead of keeping the file to myself, I thought I should share it here on my blog. All credit goes to Frank Tapson for his original awesome resource. All I have done is turned the worksheet into a Google Slide Presentation/PDF for easier presenting.

My students have really enjoyed this the few times I've pulled it out with some extra time at the end of class. The hardest thing to balance is giving students enough time to find the hidden animal and moving on at a decent pace so the students who have already found it don't get bored.

You can find the Google Slides here and the PDF here.

Now, I just want to find a way to do this with hidden math terms!

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