Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Polyhedron Math Mobile

Now that state standardizing testing is over I needed something to fill the remaining weeks of school. Math projects here we come! I found this really cool project to make polyhedrons (three-dimensional shapes) using card stock paper, a compass, a ruler, scissors, and tape. It can be found at Math Cats Math Crafts.

I decided to go one step further and let the kids create a mobile when they were done. I, of course, had to make my own! It was so much fun. I loved this project.

Here is the final project. I call it "my totally awesome happy math mobile!"

Entire mobile

I have it hanging above my desk. I told the kids I put it there for times when I get so frustrated that I throw my head back and groan. I will then open my eyes and see the sea of happy yellow faces. I would instantly feel the frustration melt away. They just laughed at me as normal.

Here are the individual polyhedrons. First up, the tetrahedron. Tetra in Ancient Greek means 4 and hedron means side.

Tetrahedron-4 sides

Next the hexahedron. Hex means 6. Cubes are considered hexahedrons.

Hexahedron-6 sides

I don't have a picture of the octahedron. Not sure what happened to it. But it is an 8 sided figure. An example can be see here.

Next is the decahedron. The 10 sided polyhedron (poly means many). I think this one is my favorite because it looks like a star.

Decahedron-10 sides

And finally the icosahedron. It is a 20 sided polyhedron. This one was challenging! It took 12 inter looping circles and many lines in just the right places. It was interesting to say the least. Several of the kids ended up tracing my lines just to get it right. It was worth the trouble though because it looks amazing! The picture doesn't really do it justice though.

Icosahedron-20 sides

I leave you with a parting artsy shot of "my totally awesome happy math mobile!" Hope you enjoy it and will go out and make your own!

Close up of center tetrahedron