Sunday, 10 February 2013

Shape up with Tarsia

At the ICT and Languages Conference in Southampton this weekend I have presented a workshop on using Tarsia to make shape puzzles for use in the languages classroom.  You can read my previous posts about Tarsia here and here.

The PowerPoint that I used in Southampton would not be much use for telling you more about how to use Tarsia, so I have recorded a short video showing you the basics:

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You can also download my Tarsia guide and my brand new Ideas for using Tarsia sheet. 

Here are the links to the animal puzzle that I made in the video:

French animal square puzzle
French animal puzzle table
French animal puzzle solution

You can also try out the countries and languages puzzle that people tried out on the day - it would be great for European Day of Languages:

Countries and languages hexagon puzzle 
Countries and languages table 
Countries and languages solution
Countries and languages puzzle shrunk (smaller pieces)

Some people have been asking if there is an easy way to cut out Tarsia puzzles.  Well unfortunately there isn't, but one way to lessen the load is to give the printed out puzzles to the students to cut out and then assemble.  I always wait until there is something good on TV before I cut out Tarsias, and it makes the time pass more quickly!  I also number each set so that when (not if) I find a puzzle piece on the floor I know which set it came from.  Some people were also asking where I got the grip-seal bags that I store the puzzles in - they are these ones.


  1. This was a really useful article and set of tips! Thank you!

  2. Hey...that is such a good idea and your video was very clear and helpful. I am about to start teaching French to a tutor group of three brothers aged 6,8 and 10 and this will be a very useful resource. Thank you.