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Supplement for Family Go Guide

Moebius (or Möbius) Strip

This activity combines an interesting geometric exercise with drawings of animals and their tracks.

A Moebius strip is a one-edged geometric surface with only one continuous side, formed by giving a 180 degree twist to a narrow, rectangular strip of paper and then connecting the two ends together. It is named after a 19th century German mathematician.


First practice making Moebius strips with small strips of paper. Form a loop with the strip of paper, placing the ends together. Now, make a twist in one end and tape the ends together. With a pencil, trace a line down the center of the strip. You will discover that your pencil mark meets up with the beginning of the line. You made a continuous plane when that half twist was made. Now that you see how a Moebius strip works, you can use it for a desert creature art project.

  1. Chooses an animal you would like to draw. Use reference books for pictures of the animal as well as the tracks of that animal.
  2. Draw a picture of the animal, approximately 3" by 4". Cut out the picture and make 7 tracings, for a total of 8 animals. Color them all then cut them out.
  3. Get a strip of paper. 36" long and 3" wide is a good size. Perhaps you can ask for a sheet of butcher paper at school. Most schools have a rack of butcher paper rolls of various colors.
  4. Glue the animals at intervals, so that there is even spacing between them as you place them around the full length of your strip.
  5. Between the animals, draw the tracks of that animal.
  6. Hang the moebius strips from your ceiling.

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Retrieved from the Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum web site on 06-23-2024