Ellipse Paper Folding Activity

 

Directions:

1.     On a piece of wax paper, patty paper, or transparent paper, construct a circle using a compass or circular shaped object.

 

2.     Label the center of your circle A.

 

3.     Create another point INSIDE the circle, not too close to the center.

 

4.     Label this point F.  (This is your focal point.)

 

5.     Fold the paper so that point F is anywhere on the circumference of the circle.  Make a crease in the paper.

 

6.     Open the paper and place point F on another point on the circumference of the circle.  Make another crease in the paper.

 

7.     Continue this process many times around the circle.  (It is sometimes easier to slide the point around the circle, making creases every few millimeters.)

 

8.     Once many creases are made, an ellipse should appear within your original circle.  (If you cannot see an ellipse yet, continue folding, making your creases closer together.)