October 22, 2015

Guest Blogger Bitter Princess' Pennant Craft

Today I have a very special guest blogger here to share a fun craft for the kids.  Bitter Princess is a fashion blogger, and happens to be my daughter.  When she was assigned the task of creating an online tutorial for making a decorative pennant banner for her pre-algebra class, she decided Simply The Good Life was the place to share it.

So, without further ado...The Bitter Princess.

As a fashion blogger, I don't usually do posts about crafts. However, fashion doesn't have to only mean your clothes. You can express your style in the way you decorate your home, or even a party. This pennant banner craft is a perfect opportunity to express yourself in your house!

Right Triangle Pennant Banner

Choose a space for your banner to be placed. Next, measure the distance across that space. I chose a window that is five feet across. Now choose your paper. If you want to color or draw on it, now is the time. Your paper should be square. If it is not square, or not the size you want, cut it to the proper size. I used construction paper that was 8 15/16 x 11 15/16. I folded one corner over to make a square, and cut off the extra bit. This also gives you a diagonal line to cut to make two right triangles.

Once you have your first pair of triangles, you can determine how many triangles you will need. The first step to figuring out how many triangles you need is knowing how long the hypotenuse of your triangle is. Remember, the hypotenuse of a right triangle is the longest side. The quick way to figure this out is to simply measure the hypotenuse. If you are using this craft as a way to get your kids to do some math, now is your chance! 

Pythagorean's Theorem states that a² + b² = c². Since you start with a square, instead of a rectangle, you can use special version of Pythagorean's Theorem; 2a² = c². This is because both legs of the triangle are the same length. As you can see in the picture above, my hypotenuse measured approximately 12 5/8 in. I say approximately because it's actually measured 12 10.24/16 in, but that doesn't make a very nice fraction. If the length of the hypotenuse you measured and the length of the hypotenuse you calculated don't quite match, you may not have cut exactly at the diagonal.

Now that you know the length of your hypotenuses, you can figure out how many triangles you need for the length of your space. Remember that my window if five feet, which is sixty inches. Simply divide the length of your space by the length of your hypotenuse to determine how many triangles will fit in your space. As you can see in the picture above, it will take approximately 4.746 triangles. I can round that up to five triangles because I want my banner to hang down, not straight across. You can choose how you want yours to hang.

Once you have all of your triangles cut out, lay them out end to end and put glue along the edge of each hypotenuse. Take a piece of string a little bigger than all of your triangles, and put it in the glue.

After the glue dries, hang up your banner!