Sensational Shapes

Shapes are all around us, in one form or another, without us even realising. Room 8 have been learning all about shapes, a branch of mathematics known as geometry. 

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Bailey and Ty beginning to construct their cube

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Riley and Riley working together to construct their 3D cube

We began by examining a large foam dice. Mrs Holder asked us to share what we knew about the dice.

Bailey said it’s made up of squares

Lucy commented it’s a cube

Layne shared it’s a 3D shape

They were all correct. As a class we discussed, and it was modelled to us by Mrs Holder, the difference between a 2 dimensional and 3-dimensional shape. We discovered that 2-dimensional shapes have 2 dimensions, height and length, while 3-dimensional shapes have 3 dimensions, height, length and width. Next, we ventured around the class in pairs and found some different shapes, we sorted them into 2D and 3D using the definitions given. 

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Lucas and Chase working together

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Marshall Sol and Lenox work together as a group to create a cube

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Addison and Petra work together to construct different parts of their cube

We were then given the task in pairs or groups of creating a 3D cube using toothpicks and blu-tack. Some of us found it harder than others to complete the task, therefore some expert students helped some of us get started and on track to success. After we had all created our cubes Mrs Holder asked us “What features of the shape can we count?”. We all agreed that corners and sides were the features of the cube we could count. Mrs Holder acknowledged that we were correct and then introduced some new geometric terms; faces, edges, and vertices. She explained to us using one of the cubes we had created that faces are the flat surfaces on a shape, edges are where two faces meet, and vertices are the corners where two or more edges meet. As a class, we worked out how many faces, edges, and vertices our cubes each had. 

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Xavier and Mitchell proudly display the tetrahedron they have created

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Stacey and Gracie with their completed octahedron

Mrs Holder then challenged us in our pairs and groups to create another regular polyhedron (a 3D shape with faces that are exactly the same shape). She provided us with some visual posters of different polyhedrons to help support us. Petra and Addison created their very own polyhedron that was made up of six triangular faces. They researched the shape they had made and discovered it is named a hexahedron. We then had to count how many faces, edges, and vertices our shapes each had. 

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Petra and Addison with the hexahedron they constructed on their own

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Visual supports

We were all very proud of the shapes we have made and decided to display them in the mathematics area of our classroom. We will continue to investigate 3D shapes as well as other branches of geometry throughout the term.

Curriculum Links

Mathematics (Geometry - Shape (Level 3) Classify plane shapes and prisms by their spatial features. Represent objects with drawings and models)

Key Words

Shapes, geometry, features, faces, edges, vertices, model.  

1 Bailey and Ty beginning to construct their cube