Traditional tangram puzzles contain seven pieces, or tans: five right triangles, one square and one parallelogram. The triangles come in three different sizes: small, medium and large. By manipulating these pieces, you can form different geometric shapes as well as pictures of people, animals and objects. Using different numbers of tans, such as in the five-piece triangle puzzle, adds an extra challenge because you don't know which pieces to omit. For children of all ages, tangram puzzles can provide positive learning experiences in geometry.
Remove the two large triangles from your set of seven tangram pieces.
Place one of the small triangles so that the hypotenuse slopes diagonally up and to the right. This piece forms the lower, left-hand corner of the triangle solution.
Position the square to the right of the first triangle, with the edges of the triangle and the square touching.
Place the other small triangle to the right of the square, so that it forms the mirror image of the first triangle.
Fit the parallelogram to the right of the small triangle. Now, you have the base of the triangle completed.
Turn the medium triangle so that the right angle points up. Place this triangle on top of the other pieces to complete the five-piece tangram triangle.