Snowflakes Are Hexagons

Hi everybody. Let’s just put this out there right now.




In fact, I’m so adamant about that, that I’ve started a hashtag on Twitter and Facebook, and maybe now Instagram called #SnowflakesAreHexagons, where I post pictures of products that use non-hexagonal snowflakes on their materials or advertising. Here are a few examples.

Please share ones you find with me using the #SnowflakesAreHexagons Hashtag!!!

That being said, feel free to read about why anytime you want to here, here or here. See?!?!

Now, here’s why I’m writing this. Many of you may be having your students make paper snowflakes in your classrooms for decorations, and many of those snowflakes WILL NOT be hexagons. That’s because your students don’t know HOW to fold them properly to make hexagonal snowflakes when they cut them out. 


For the love of all that is winter, DO NOT just give them instructions like these!!

Instead, make this a true learning opportunity using student creativity, productive struggle, and the Design Process.

  1. Have students take a piece of paper and make any snowflake they want using any type of folding procedure they want.
  2. Reveal to them that likely none of them are hexagonal, but in Real Life…ALL OF THEM ARE!! Even show them the hashtag examples now!
  3. In any good design process, after we develop our first idea, we get feedback, and improve our design. So the next step is to have them consider how they might make their snowflake hexagonal and attempt a redesign.
  4. Lather, Rinse, Repeat…always repeat. Until they’ve gotten to a point where they can make a hexagonal snowflake, all along the way tracking their attempts.
  5. The final goal, have them WRITE INSTRUCTIONS for making a hexagonal snowflake based on their experiences.

If you take this #MakeItReal approach to the #SnowflakesAreHexagons conundrum, your students will come out of it with more than just a craft to hang or take home, but potentially a deep understanding of geometry, the design process, and how learning happens.

Don’t forget to check out The Instant Relevance Podcast!

Remember to use the #MakeItReal Hashtag for sharing ideas!

Connect with Denis Sheeran at Denissheeran.com

Twitter: @MathDenisNJ and

#MakeItReal Chat Every Wednesday 9:30 pm EST for 30 Minutes.

Read Instant Relevance

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