Beacon Lesson Plan Library

Symmetry Monsters

Julia Unger


After a study of symmetrical shapes and designs, students will create their own “Symmetry Monsters.”


The student determines lines of symmetry of two-dimensional shapes by using concrete materials.


- Walter, Annette [Look at Annette] M. Evans & Company, 1977.
- Copy of Letters (see associated files)
- Copy of Shapes (see associated files)
- Print outs of Polish Wycinanki artwork (see weblinks)
- 8x11 white construction paper (1 per student)
- acrylic paints in various colors
- paintbrushes
- 12x18 construction paper in various colors (1 per student)
- 8x11 construction paper in various colors (1-2 per student)
- scissors
- glue


1. Gather the book Look at Annette by Marion Walter or another related book.
2. Print out Letters (see associated files) and Shapes (see associated files).
3. Print out samples of Polish Wycinanki (see weblink).
4. Gather 8x11 paper in white.
5. Gather acrylic paints in various colors.
6. Gather 12x18 paper in various colors.
7. Gather 8x11 paper in various colors.


Day One:
1. Begin by reading Walter, Annette [Look at Annette] M. Evans & Company, 1977.
Discuss the math vocabulary word “symmetry.”

2. Demonstrate with large alphabet letters different lines of symmetry (Letters - see associated file). Use the letter A first. Ask, “Who thinks this letter is symmetrical?” “Who does not think this letter is symmetrical?”

3. After students determine that the A is symmetrical, draw its line of symmetry.

4. Bring out the B. Repeat the questions in Step #2.

5. After students determine that the B is symmetrical, draw its line of symmetry.

6. Bring out the H. Repeat the questions in Step #2.

7. After students determine that the H is symmetrical, draw its lines of symmetry. Note that some objects have more than one line of symmetry.

8. Bring out the G (Non-examples, see associated files). Repeat the questions in Step #2.

9. After students determine that the G is not symmetrical, discuss why.

10. Using different shapes (Shapes – see associated files), discuss lines of symmetry for plane shapes. Students should already be familiar with this term. However, some review may be necessary.

11. Show the non-examples of the shapes (Non-examples, see associated files). Discuss why these are not symmetrical.

12. Show symmetrical artwork, such as Polish Wycinanki (see weblinks for pictures). Students should be able to identify the lines of symmetry in each sample of artwork.

13. Pass out 8x11 white paper and acrylic paint.

14. Students fold their white papers in half.

15. Students write their names along one side of the crease in paint.

16. Students then fold their papers to create a mirror image of their names.

17. Leave papers out to dry.

Day Two:
1. Review the symmetrical letters, shapes, and artwork discussed in Day One.

2. Pass out 12x18 construction papers (various colors). Students then choose
an 8x11 piece in an alternate color.

3. Students fold their 12x18 papers in half.

4. Students fold their 8x11 papers in half.

5. Model how to cut along the 8x11 folded crease to create a symmetrical shape.

6. Allow students to cut their own 8x11 papers in their own symmetrical design.

7. Model the gluing of the shape along the crease of the 12x18 background

8. Demonstrate for students the required addition of eyes, mouth, nose, arms, legs, feet, and hands (cut the same way as in #5). Remark on the symmetrical placements of these objects.

9. Pass out the rubric and discuss.

10. Allow students to make these required additions.

11. Tell students to add whatever else they would like to their Symmetry Monsters. Make sure to emphasize that these additions should be symmetrical.


Students create their Symmetry Monster using student created construction paper shapes.
- Symmetry Monsters should be placed along the center fold of the 12x18 construction paper.
- Symmetry Monsters’ bodies should be a symmetrical shape.
- Symmetry Monsters’ attachments (eyes, nose, mouth, legs, arms, feet, hands, etc.) should be symmetrical on the body of the Symmetry Monster.
- All other details that the student attaches to the Monster should continue to be symmetrically placed.

Formatively assess the students’ Symmetry Monsters using the Symmetry Monster Rubric (see associated file). Give feedback and additional opportunities to work on skills as needed


To extend this lesson, students can describe the symmetry of their two-dimensional Symmetry Monster in a written paragraph.

Web Links

An educational website that guides students in the making of Wycinanki. Scroll down the page to the section “Two Major Styles” and click on either style for sample pictures of this artwork.
Wycinanki Paper Cutting

Attached Files

Shapes     File Extension: pdf

Letters     File Extension: pdf

Non-examples     File Extension: pdf

Rubric     File Extension: pdf

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