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Ms. Polly Gonn and the Angle- Gator A tale of geometry and the science of the food chain

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Meet Ms. Gonn. Ms. Gonn is your average 5 th grade teacher. She enjoys learning, kids, and silence (she especially likes when the last two go together). But her favorite thing of all is geometry. Her passion is geometry.

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Every year, her students take a trip to Geo Metric’s Shape Park, a nature park in which the students find “the shapes and angles of nature”. This year, though, the trip would be different. Very different.

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The Trip At the nature park, Ms. Gonn’s students were supposed to recognize the “shapes of nature”. Ms. Gonn supervised, standing in the crowd of 5 th graders. Meanwhile in the Perpendicular Pond, a crafty alligator cooked up a plan.

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“Ms. Gonn! I want to learn about shapes and angles too!” yelled the clever alligator. Ms. Gonn ran over quickly to him; she just could not stand someone who didn’t know about geometry. The alligator opened wide. With a drooling muzzle he asked, “What shape are my teeth?”

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Ms. Gonn squealed happily and stepped inside his mouth for a closer look. “How fascinating! Look” -she cried as she pointed to an equaled sided triangle- “that is an equilateral triangle!

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And these over here” -she pointed to two triangles with two equal length sides and one different-sized one- “these are isosceles triangles!”

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Last, she pointed to an uneven-sided triangle with 3 different sized angles. “This odd-shaped one is a scalene triangle. Notice how none of the sides are the same length.”

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Then Ms. Gonn casually walked around in the mouth of the alligator, who was drooling uncontrollably now. Suddenly, Ms. Gonn squealed with delight again and pointed to a four-sided flat-like tooth. “I chipped those back ones,” The alligator muttered sadly. “Well, lucky for us because that unique tooth is a trapezoid. A trapezoid is a type of quadrilateral.”

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The alligator was getting impatient. He needed to move his plan along. “What about angles? Aren’t I want to learn about those too!” The alligator said slyly. “Oh of course! That’s my favorite part!” Ms. Polly shrieked again.

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She looked up at the saliva-dripping roof over her. “Yes… mm-hm. Perfect.” She murmured. “Now, open your mouth this wide.” She signaled with her hands how much. The alligator opened its mouth as wide as it could. Ms. Gonn pulled a protractor out of her pocket. “This is an angle ruler to measure how many degrees an angle is.”

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“Well done. That is quite wide.” The impatient alligator waited for her to explain. “120°,” she read. “That’s an obtuse angle. Obtuse angles are more than 90°.” She then grinned.

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“Now for my favorite angle – close your mouth just a touch.” Now, the alligator thought – now we are getting somewhere. But then suddenly Ms. Gonn squealed again. “Aha! - a right angle! This is exactly 90° degrees! Notice your mouth is just like an L. A right angle!” She grinned.

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The alligator was getting hungry and had the urge to snap his jaws shut. Hey, it’s hard to ignore an enthusiastically lecturing lady in your mouth! Realizing that it was time for the plan to kick in, the alligator yelled out “Do you know what my favorite angle is?” “What?” Ms. Gonn asked, still standing in his mouth.

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“ACUTE!” And with that, the alligator snapped his drooling jaws to 0°.

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THE END BURP!

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