In this activity you will use Zometools to build and learn about 3-dimensional geometric shapes. Then you will make a Power Point presentation to show the objects you made, their geometric properties, and how to make them.
1. Use the Zometools to make 3-dimensional models of geometric shapes. Make models of as many shapes as you can, including but not limited to the following thirteen shapes: cube, tetrahedron, octahedron, dodecahedron, icosahedron, triangular prism, rectangular prism, pentagonal prism, hexagonal prism, octagonal prism, triangular pyramid, square pyramid, and pentagonal pyramid.
2. After you make each 3-dimensional shape, take a picture of it with a digital camera.
3. After you make each shape, describe its geometric properties and how it was made: how many faces are there (and what shape are they)? how many edges are there (and what color and length are they)? how many vertices are there?
4. Look at the Interactive Geometry (Maths Net) web site for ideas of shapes to make. Look at the first four links: The platonic solids, Prisms, Pyramids, and Nets. If you have extra time, check out some of the other links on this site.
5. Look at George Hart's web sites for help on making shapes with Zometools (Zometool Polyhedra by George Hart), help on naming shapes (Polyhedra Names by George Hart), and cool 3-dimensional geometric sculptures he has made (George Hart's Sculptures). You could also start at his homepage (George Hart's Home Page) and explore some of the other links if you have extra time.
6. Download the 3-D Geometry Power Point Template. Finish this Power Point by replacing all blanks (_____) with the answers and inserting digital pictures.
7. If you made extra prisms or pyramids, or other geometric shapes, insert new slides into the Power Point and describe the shape's geometric properties and insert a picture.
8. Download the handout Platonic Solid Data. Complete the table by inserting a picture and entering the following information for each of the 5 platonic solids: what is the name of the shape of the face? how many faces are there? how many edges are there? how many vertices are there? Then, examine the data table for patterns and relationships and answer the two questions.