Making 3d Shapes:
Nets for Every 3d Shape You May Need
I think every child goes through school making all the usual 3d shapes eg cubes, prisms & pyramids. Some even get to explore the Platonic solids, but very few students get to explore the really, really interesting 3d shapes 🙂
Your challenge is to open your students’ eyes to the world of Math and let them see that it has lots of interesting things to show them.
Have the children visit this 3d Shape Making Website and choose a shape to make that they think is interesting and ‘outside your comfort zone’. N.B Encourage them to choose templates that will not lead to frustration and tension at home. The shape you choose must be challenging to construct but not so hard that your get frustrated and give up.
Tips & Tricks
– Print the 3d shape nets onto thin cardboard rather than paper. I find 200 weight much easier to manipulate.
– Color the faces of the net before you construct the shape.
– Clear sticky tape works much better than glue.
– Have several pieces of sticky tape cut to size and stuck to the side of a desk.
– Working with a partner can help with the manipulation.
– Fold and score the edges along a ruler to get a straight fold.
– Create a mobile of all the finished shapes and hang it in a place where the students who pass your room can view the shapes. This does create a great deal of interest in the work you are doing.
– Challenge the children to read some of the names of the shapes.
– Celebrate the names 🙂 ‘What did you make Emily?’ ‘I made a tetrahemihexahedron.’
– Tell us why it has that name? Break down what each ‘section’ of the name means – tetra means 4, hemi means half, hexa means 6 and hedron means 3d shape with faces. Then try and work out just what that means 🙂
Note – Wikipedia has great animations and 3d manipulation tools to help you explore the world of 3d shapes
– Have the children reflect on the nature of challenging yourself to work outside your comfort zone.