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Math Vocabulary Words:
The Latin Roots of Tesselation

Math vocabulary words can provide the hook that will lead today's students to a much larger general vocabulary.

Latin roots provide the opportunity to connect your math lesson plans to larger vocabulary building exercises.

The Latin root tessera means a token or a small square tile.

Romans used tesserae as tickets to get into the colloseum.

They used tesserae to piece together beautiful mosaics.

The diminutive form, tessella, means a small tile or shingle. This word especially came to describe the small tiles used in works of art.

So when it comes time to teach the mathematical concept of tesselation, why not include this Latin root and a few other English derivatives worth knowing?

Here are the top English words with the Latin root TESSERA/TESSELLA:

  • tessellate: to form or arrange is a checkered or mosaic pattern.
  • tessera: a small piece used in mosaic work; a square of bone or wood used in ancient times as a ticket or token.
  • tessella: a small tessera.
  • tessellar: formed as a mosaic.
  • tesseract: the generization of a cube to four dimensions.
  • tesseraic: diversified by square.
  • tesselation: the art or practice of tesselating; a tesselated work.

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