Sunday, March 24, 2013

Properties of Solid Shapes and Volume

This week we began discuss the various properties of solid shapes and how to find the volume of these shapes.

Properties of Solid Shapes 
We began by reviewing what we knew about solid (3D) shapes.  For examples: Faces, Edges, and Vertices. 

Faces - The flat side of a solid shape
Edges - Where two faces meet
Vertices -Where three or more faces meet

We also talked about what a polyhedron is, a solid shapes whose faces are all polygons.  From here we learned about mathematician Leonhard Euler (pronounced "Oil-er").  Euler discovered the relationship between faces, edges, and vertices. 

Euler's Theorem states that (F + V) - 2 = E.   We tested this on several polyhedrons.

Volume of Solid Shapes
At the end of the week, we began discussing volume of a solid shape. 

We identified two different ways to find volume.
-  If the shape were irregular (not an identifiable polyhedron) we would just count the cubic units. 
- If the shape were regular polyhedrons we can use the formula length x width x height.

To engage the students in class we use "Whole Brain Teaching" often.  If you are interested read more about it here: Whole Brain Teaching

Many times, when using WBT in class, I have the students use their friends, "Smarty" and "Dufus".  These guys are their hands that talks to one another.  Smarty is just as his name implies, he knows how to do the skill and is a very nice, polite teacher.  Dufus is not as smart and asks several questions.  Dufus needs Smarty's help a lot.

Ok, I tell you guys all of this to explain the following video.  I told the students I found "Smarty" and "Dufus" on  Here they are ready to teach you how to find volume.  Enjoy!

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