Circles, Supplementary, & Complementary Angles

Circles and Angles

As I started to sort through the year and clean out, I found a sample of the circle foldable that I made with the kids.  Years ago at Lakeshore Learning, I came across this really cool white construction paper cut in perfect circles ($4? for 100).  It was in the preschool section (I just like to play there once in a while), and it was for something called a Spin and Draw.  Apparently, you have something like a Lazy Susan and put the circle cut paper on top of it with a magnet to hold it down, and then give a 3 year old paint.  Yeah, not happening in my classroom.  But the paper was so cool, that I figured I could use it for something.

Over the years I have used it for various foldables about clouds and the water cycle, but a few years ago I got really creative and decided to use it for CIRCLES...I am obviously a genius.  It changes every time I do, but these are the basics. 

Circle/Angles Foldable

After discussing how many degrees are in a circle, demonstrate folding it in half - point out that it looks like a protractor  - 180 degrees. 

Then have them open it up and refold it so that they it is in fourths. 

At this point I make them open it up all the way and tell me how many degrees are in a complete circle.  Then I have them fold it in half and tell me how many degrees are in a half circle, and remind them that now it looks like a protractor.  Some years I only do this once, and other years we spend a lot of time emphasizing the full/half/fourth circle thing - it just depends.  

Once I have beat the circle thing into the ground, I have them fold it in half and use a highlighter along the bottom of the half.  This starts the introduction for supplementary angles. 

Then we fold it in fourths, highlight the edges, and introduce complementary angles.

This year, we went right into vertical anglesLast year, we did 2 circle foldables - one just for the complementary and supplementary with vertical angles on the flipside, and one with the area with circumference on the flipside. 

This year on the flipside, we did diameter, radius, area, and circumference.

Keep an eye out for Spin and Draw art paper!  Sure you could cut out the circles, but WHY when you can get it pre-cut for a reasonable price?  Plus, the paper comes shrink-wrapped around a sturdy cardboard circle - perfect for the kids to use if they need to trace circles for some other project.  I usually buy two or three packages a year and share with my colleagues.  I put them in the paper cupboard where the kids see them all year.  It teases them all year and they try to figure out what we are going to do with it.

 If you have any questions, please ask!  I didn't want to go into too many details and preach to the choir:)  This is one of those foldables that can change and go with the flow.   It does not have to be the same every year - your kids are not the same every year. 


  1. Love, Love, Love, Love, Love!
    And we are currently reviewing supplementary, complementary and vertical angles for The Test.
    I am so glad you came to BlogLand, because I can tell I am going to be bringing my coffee to your place quite often!

    There is a Lakeshore a few miles away. Bet you can guess what just got added to my To Do list!

    Thanks for sharing, MSOCD...

    Finding JOY in 6th Grade

  2. This was always one of my favorites!!

    Life In Middle School

    1. Sometimes, I stumble across something good:)

  3. I just taught this on Monday, I wish I had seen this earlier because it looks great! I might have to go back and review this concept using this because I think it will really help with their understanding. Link added to my lesson plans so I won't forget for next year.