If this was a survey or poll of sorts and you were asked if you know, have seen and have ever used a geometry tool box with the geometry items inside, some replies would be, “Geo… what?”. It’s the Geometrical box items we all know. Well, to many persons with British roots, it’s called the mathematical set of instruments. It is also known as a Math geometry tool set. This little box of instruments is a staple for every high school student and even some fields of study in the University. It’s basically a rectangular metal box with various items for geometry.

Geometry was one of the two areas of study that made up ancient mathematics. Mathematics in the early days in Greece involved the study of arithmetic(numbers) and geometry (shapes). Geometry dates back to antiquity, the earliest form being discovered in Babylonia and the Indus Valley around 3000 B.C. early geometry was concerned with construction, surveying and the study of the heavenly bodies. Therefore, it involved calculations on area, lengths, volumes and angles. However, over the centuries, geometry has evolved and is now more complex and abstract than ever. The basic definition still remains though: geometry is the study of shapes.

Geometric tools or items are those mechanical tools for mathematical construction of shapes. The geometry box items consist of two set-squares, a protractor of 180º, a ruler measuring 15cm, a compass, a divider, an eraser, two pencils and a stencil. These items are not just there to fill up the space. They each have their different uses. Although, the tool box is still useful to older scholars, it is still very useful to every student of mathematics and everyone has and will at one point in life study mathematics. It is inevitable.

Uses of the geometric box items

  1. The ruler: Another name for this item is the straightedge. It’s simply used to draw straight lines and take measurements. On either side, it’s calibrated in centimeters and millimeters.
  2. The protractor: little children may tell you that it’s for drawing the rainbow. It’s your job to teach them that it is for drawing angles as well as measuring them from 0º-180º. Measurement can be taken from the left or right.
  • The set-squares: these are those two triangles. One looks like a right angle triangle while the other looks like an equilateral triangle. When a perpendicular or parallel line is to be drawn, these two will do a perfect job.
  1. The divider: this looks like the compass but gave up the leg that holds a pencil for one that can actually and talk. It is used to mark measurements/points and compare them where necessary.
  2. The Compass: if your geometry box lacks a compass, it isn’t entirely useless but a very important piece is missing. The compass is that item with a V-shape that can be adjusted. One of the legs has an allowance for the short pencil. This tool is used to draw circles, strike angles and carve out arcs.

Every other features are just little helpers to the main geometrical mechanics; the items in the geometry set.

Geometry has influenced other areas of life like architecture and even medicine. Every giant stride was facilitated at some point by the math items. So, let’s encourage Helix to keep distributing these little tool boxes across the world.

Paul Petersen

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