Using Algebra Tiles to Complete the Square
Topic Index | Algebra2/Trig Index | Regents Exam Prep Center

 

Algebra tiles can be used to visualize how a perfect square trinomial can be formed.
The tiles could be used by students or simply used by the teacher as a warm-up to this concept.

Example 1:   What is needed to create a perfect square trinomial for: 


 

 

Use the algebra tiles to create a square.  What tiles will be needed to complete the square?

 

 

 

 

After viewing several examples, help students to see the pattern for finding the needed constant term.  "Take half of the coefficient of the x-term and square it."

 

 

Example 2:   What is needed to create a perfect square trinomial for: 


 

 

Use the algebra tiles to create a square.  Red tiles represent negative values.  What tiles will be needed to complete the square?  What will be the sign of these needed tiles?

 

 

 

 

This example should solidify the concept that the needed constant term will be a positive value.