From their many gadgets to each department’s logos, the Odd Squad frequently finds and uses 2-dimensional (2D) and 3-dimensional (3D) shapes to help solve their investigations. In this activity, your child will fold and glue paper to build 3D shapes while learning math vocabulary.
- Paper polyhedron shapes (PDF)
- Scissors or utility knife
- A cutting mat or board if using a knife
- School or craft glue
- Before you begin, introduce your child to two key words:
- Polygon: a 2D shape that is made out of straight lines, such as a square or triangle.
- Polyhedron: a 3D shape with flat sides that are made up of polygons, such as a cube or pyramid
- Choose a paper polyhedron template: a tetrahedron or a dodecahedron. (Tip: The tetrahedron is recommended for younger children.)
- Load the paper or cardstock into your printer and print the polyhedron template of your choice. Cut out the shape using your scissors or utility knife.
- Partially fold all of the edges and tabs on the lines to preview how the shape will form. One at a time, apply glue to a tab and then connect that tab with the corresponding polygon, according to the template. You might need to hold it for up to a minute.
- Once you’ve glued all of the tabs and the glue has dried, you will have a 3D polyhedron. Use it to decorate your child’s room or desk, or to make a hanging ornament!
- After you’ve finished, take a closer look at your polyhedron. How many faces (flat sides) does it have? What shapes are the polygonal faces?
In this activity, kids turned a 2D template into a 3D shape. Now reverse the process! Have your child choose an object in the house with a distinct shape — such as block structure or kitchen tool — and make a 2D drawing of it.
This craft comes to you from the creators of Odd Squad.
Iowa PBS STEAM Activities and Crafts provided by PBS KIDS Parents.