Geometric Origami Project -- Origami Bunny Balloon Tutorial with Geometry Terms


In geometry class we have been talking about the special segments in triangles. It is the perfect time to introduce my origami project. To start I shared a tutorial with them making an origami bunny balloon. I use terms from our lessons like median, midsegment, angle bisector and more throughout the tutorial. The kids make one with me in class. Then I give them my assignment. The kids enjoyed spending the class trying different origami projects. You can watch my tutorial here. I love that I am making an origami bunny balloon when lunar new year is going on and it is the year of the rabbit in Chinese Horoscope. 


You will need one piece of square origami paper for this project. If doing it with a class, you will need one piece for each student plus extras for practice and playing for their project.

Starting with the side you do not want to see up, fold the diagonals. Once I fold both diagonals, I show the kids the solid side of the paper and look at the diagonals. Since the next chapter will be about quadrilaterals, I like to point out that the square's diagonals are perpendicular and congruent. They form four congruent right triangles.

Now with the side you want to show up, fold the paper in half to form a rectangle. Unfold and fold in the other direction.

Now open your page up with the side you want showing facing up. Using the folds you have made you will fold the paper into a triangle.

Now you have an isosceles triangle with an altitude going down the center forming two congruent triangles. (Since it is isosceles, the altitude is also a median, angle bisector, and perpendicular bisector.)

Now using the two congruent triangles, we will fold a median for it. (Again, it is isosceles, so it is the median, angle bisector, perpendicular bisector and altitude.) We will do this fold on both of the triangles.

Now we have the two smaller folded triangles.

We will fold the midsegment of each by folding the vertex to the center fold.

The midsegments are little pockets. We will fold the top flaps into the pockets. 

Once the flaps are in the pockets, you flip the project over. 

Now we will fold the angle bisectors of the smaller triangles. Fold the outer side to the center fold.

Fold both angle bisectors!

Now we take the bottom vertices/flaps and fold them up to create three congruent triangles (roughly).

Our next fold takes the lower corners and brings them to the top vertex of the center congruent triangles. 

Now the bunny is ready to blow up. I like to "stretch" it out a bit like I stretch a balloon before blowing it up. You blow where my finger is in the picture above.

Your rabbit is done!! 

Now I pass out the kids the information about their project. Their job is find an origami project to make a video tutorial using some of the geometry terms we have learned this year with special focus on the special segments in triangles. I gave my class the rest of the period to look at origami books and/or on-line tutorials and paper to practice. They have to turn in the video as well as the origami project they fold in the video. The kids are loving this project!!