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Aims and objectives
Shapes is an activity which supports the development and understanding of 2D and 3D shapes by exploring their properties.

Previous knowledge
Pupils should be familiar with the terms ‘2D’ and ‘3D’ and should also be aware of the common shapes. A glossary is included in the activity to help pupils with the key definitions and explore using appropriate vocabulary.

In the classroom
The 2D element of the activity is intended for revision purposes only. It can be used as preparation for introducing the concepts of 3D shapes.

The 3D shapes area allows pupils to investigate different shapes, explore their properties and become familiar with the appropriate mathematical language.

Accompanying each shape (with the exception of the sphere and hemi-sphere) are downloadable copies of their nets. These can printed onto paper or card for use in the classroom where the shapes can be cut out and folded and glued to make 3D models. For many of the shapes, there is more than one way to layout a net. An extension to this part of the activity would be to challenge pupils to take one of the shapes, for example an octahedron, then explore how many different ways they can discover to create new nets for that same shape.

Teachers could use the classroom environment as an activity for pupils to search out and identify the shapes that they can find. A worksheet is provided to support this process where pupils look for shapes, describe the properties of what they can see and then from the information gained, identify the shapes using the appropriate mathematical language.

Support materials description: Resources type:
The first two worksheets contain charts for pupils to use in the classroom where they can look at shapes2.pdf and shapes3.pdf shapes, make a note of their properties and from this information identify the shape.

Another shape_nets.pdf contains all the nets that are used in the activity in just one convenient file. These can be printed out onto stiff paper and used to explore and create 3D objects from a 2D plane.


Curriculum references
Mathematics – KS1:
Ma3 2a, b, c; 3c

Mathematics – KS2:
Ma3 2b, c, d

Mathematics – KS3:
Ma3 2c, d, e, f, j, k

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