This is mine and Anna's new favorite past time. We are both puzzle fanatics, but the problem with jig saw puzzles is once you've completed it; your done. I mean, who wants to rework the same puzzle over and over? (Other than Anna that is) So, when I found out about tangrams, it was love. I actually owned some for a year before I bothered to find out what their purpose was. They were included in the Saxon Math manipulative's kit, but were not needed for first grade, so I never took them out of the package. Then I stumbled on a book about tangrams, and my first thought was, this is something mathematical that Anna might actually like. Turns out I like them too, maybe even more than she does.
The point of the puzzle is to try to figure out how to make a copy of a silhouetted pattern shape. You have to use all seven pieces, and they can't overlap. It seems easy, but it's not, and the simpler the shape, the harder it is to figure out. With just these seven little shapes, you can make thousands of objects. People, plants, animals, objects, letters, you name it. It's also educational, and can be used to help teach geometry and fractions. Most of all, it's fun!!