youcubed: Toothpick Squares (6-8)

This activity allows students to see a growth pattern in different ways.

We use the number talk approach to debrief the way students are ‘seeing’ the toothpicks so others have an opportunity to see different ways of looking at the problem. This helps students realize that there are different strategies for solving problems in maths and that maths is about generalizing how we see patterns. In this problem students will have an opportunity to generalize the number of toothpicks needed to make any size square. Some may choose to take this pattern further by using toothpicks and marshmallows to consider a 3-D pattern.

Math Topics
Patterning & Sequencing
Middle School, Educator
6th Grade, 7th Grade, 8th Grade
Descriptions of PDFs

Download lesson plan.

What are you looking for?


youcubed (Stanford University)

Website URL

Type of Resource

Lesson Plan
PDF File

Assigned Categories