Locating Points Using Cartesian Coordinates

Mercedes Rodriguez Clemente Community Academy H. S.
1147 N. Western Ave.
Chicago IL 60622
312- 534-4000


1. To give the coordinates of a point.
2. To plot a point, given it's coordinates.
3. To use the coordinate system in locating places on the map.

Materials Needed:

Chicago City Maps
Graph Paper
Multicultural Handout (Rene Descartes)
Activity Sheets


1. The teacher will ask the students questions concerning how they give
directions to get from one place to another. After discussion and finding
different responses, pass out Chicago City maps so they show some paths on the
map. The teacher will ask the students which important directions they need (N,
S, E, W).

2. Introduce the Cartesian Plane by drawing two number lines on the board
intersecting at zero. Explain information concerning the Cartesian Plane
(origin, positives and negatives, quadrants, etc.). Discuss the term ordered

3. The teacher will assist the students in locating points on the plane, by
giving some examples on the board.

4. The students will give the coordinates of points on the plane.

5. The students will plot points on the plane.

6. Given three vertices of a rectangle, students will find the coordinates
of the fourth vertex.

7. Make two groups play coordinates Tic-Tac-Toe on the board. The rules of
the game follow the regular Tic-Tac-Toe rules, except that one group must get
four points in a line.

Performance Assessment:

Draw a map of your neighborhood showing places such as schools,
churches, post office, etc. In giving directions, apply the skills learned
about coordinates. (Hint: one block = one unit, and N, S, E, W imply positive
and negative directions).

Return to Mathematics Index