One of the topics that my students have trouble with is memorizing their prefect squares and perfect cubes. Because of this, we did a lab with perfect squares where they were given graph paper and had to make squares. Then we talked about the relationship between the edge lengths and the areas. It went GREAT 🙂
The next day, I sent them on a mission. The students had to model whether or not a given number was a perfect cube and then (with their model) figure out the cube root. I gave them little blocks and sent them to work with their partner.
Last year, I gave them a list of the prefect cubes, talked about a cube and said “go memorize”…well that didn’t work well. This year, after their cube lab, I had them journal “How can you find the value of a number squared from the model of that number cubed” and told them to make a cube, look at it and really digest what it meant, what the face shows and what the edge length shows.
This was FANTASTIC!!! The kids loved it 🙂 Then of course we made a list in our notes of perfect cubes and honestly, they made the list themselves. They were able to experiment up to 5 cubed and I am really proud of them!!