Protractor Practice
Primary Market
Education, Secondary Ed
Character Focus
Communication, Cooperation, Teamwork
Items Needed
1 Toobeez set per 1 - 3 groups, 1 piece of chart paper per group, 3 different-colored markers per group, 1 sheet of graph paper per student, 1 protractor per student, 1 pen or pencil
The Activity Time
35 - 45 minutes


  • Familiarize students with the protractor
  • Enable students to define and classify obtuse, acute and right angles
  • Practice drawing examples of the three angle types
  • Aid students in learning measurement skills by using protractor
  • Work cooperatively with others in a teambuilding style
Character Focus
Teamwork/Cooperation & Communication
The Challenge

The group should be able to use a protractor to identify qualities of angles.


Setup Time: 15 minutes


  • 1 Toobeez set per 1 – 3 groups
  • 1 piece of chart paper per group
  • 3 different-colored markers per group
  • 1 sheet of graph paper per student
  • 1 protractor per student
  • 1 pen or pencil
Activity Plan

Time: 35 – 45 minutes

Instruction: Whole class, pairs and Individual

Space: Medium

Activity Setup

1. Teachers should tape chart paper to the chalkboard. Students should lay their chart paper on the desk so it is visible to the group.

protractor-practice12. Connect two 24” Toobeez tubes into a straight line along the multi-holed equator of a sphere. This will serve as the 0º/180º line of the Toobeez protractor model. (*If enough Toobeez sets are not available, three models can be made per Toobeez set. The teacher model can be modified by using 36″ tubes, and student groups can construct models using either 24” or 16” tubes.)

3. Insert a 24” Toobeez tube into the center sphere along the multi-holed equator so that it is at a right angle with the tubes of the 0º/180º line. This will serve as the 90º line of the Toobeez protractor model.protractor-practice2

4. Insert two additional 24” Toobeez, one on either side of the 90º line, so that both are midway between the 90º and 0º/180º line.protractor-practice3

5. Teachers should hold their protractor model up to the center of the chart paper and have students do the same in their groups.

6. Using a red marker, color the chart paper to the right of the 90º tube.Write the word “acute” (<90º) above this area.

7. Using a green marker, write the word “right” above the 90º tube.

8. Using a blue marker, color the chart paper to the left of the 90º tube. Write the word “obtuse” (>90º) above this area.protractor-practice4

Helpful Hints

  • Be sure to review these tips prior to beginning the activity, and if necessary, share reminders with the group during the activity.
  • Teachers should often remind students that the Toobeez protractor is a model to compare with their own protractors
  • Remind students that the tubes of the Toobeez model are representative of particular angle measurements (for example, center tube = 90º, middle tubes = 45º and 135º)
  • Teachers may want to use an erasable marker to write the measurement values on the model tubes

Here are available Training Options!

Activity Instructions

1. Divide the students into groups.

2. Read aloud the following Activity Challenge Box to the group.

Challenge: The group should be able to use a protractor to identify qualities of angles.

3. Teachers should begin with a mini-lesson on measuring angles and protractor use.  Hint: Use the Toobeez protractor model as an educational prop in the mini-lesson.

4. Using the remaining Toobeez pieces, each group should build model of each type of angle and classify it.

5. At their desks, each student should draw three examples of obtuse and acute angles.

6. Using their protractors, students should measure their hand-drawn angles.

7. After the activity, circle up the group and ask them the following questions: “How is a protractor used to identify types of angles?”

8. Finally, move to the “Activity Discussion and Processing” section of the activity.


  • Using their protractors, have students draw angles of specific measurements.
  • Quiz students using angle models made from Toobeez. Have students classify these models as obtuse, acute and right angles.

Activity Discussion and Processing

To close the lesson, end with a group discussion about what was learned during the activity. Circle up the group and work through the following questions. If possible, record the group’s responses on flip chart paper so all comments are displayed.

  • Describe the difference between obtuse, acute and right angles
  • How can knowing the type of angle assist you in describing the angle?
  • In what real world scenarios would knowledge of angles be useful?
  • How did working as a group to build and classify angles enhance your understanding?

Here are some additional topics for class discussion:

  • The procedure for using a protractor
  • The classification system of angles
  • The building and drawing of angles to meet certain specifications
  • The team effort used in building the protractor and angle models

Activity Variations

1. A different view.

Insert eight 24” Toobeez tubes into a sphere along the multi-holed equator. Present this to students as the interior model of a circle. Challenge the class to deduce from the model how many degrees are in a complete circle.

2.  Extension/Follow up.

At their desks, have students draw several examples of some geometric shapes (for example, triangle, square and rectangle). Then have the students measure and record the angular measurements of these shapes. Challenge the students to identify any observed mathematical rules from their findings (for example, all the angles in a triangle add up to 180º).

Albert J. Reyes, MA and B. Michael McCarver, JD are the principals of Lingua Medica LLC, a partnership of writers, researchers and analysts specializing in science, mathematics and medical education. The goal of Lingua Medica is to create successful educational materials by fusing quality writing with effective presentation formats.
All Activities of Albert J. and B. Michael

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