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Geometric Solids

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  5. Geometric Solids

Material

Solid geometric forms including sphere, ovoid, ellipsoid, cylinder, cube, triangular prism, rectangular prism, cone, square pyramid, triangular pyramid.
A set of wooden or plastic tablets that have the same base or side as the rectilinear solids and the same “shadow” as the curvilinear solids.
A basket.
A cloth or scarf.

Presentation

  1. Take three contrasting geometric solids to a rug.
  2. With the child watching, explore the shape of the solid in your hands and see the different ways it sits, stands, or rolls on the rug.
  3. Let the child hold the solid and explore it. Tell the child the name of the solid as he experiences it.
  4. Repeat this process for all three solids that were selected in the basket.
  5. Perform a three-period lesson with the solids so that the child learns the names of the solids.
  6. Repeating the same steps above over the next few days, add two or three more solids per day.

Exericses

Exercise 1, Presentation

The child doesn’t work independently yet,

Exercise 2, Stereognostic Game

Place many solids that the child knows in the basket. Bring the basket and the scarf to the rug. Cover the basket with the scarf. Say the name of a solid and ask the child to find it without looking, just using his hands. Later, you can put just one solid on a rug underneath the scarf and ask the child to identify what the solid is. You can also place multiple solids under the scarf and play the same game.

Exercise 3, Cards

Bring the geometric solids cards to the rug. Invite the child to explore the material and ask him to see how the various solids match different cards.

Language

Names of the solids: sphere, ovoid, ellipsoid, cylinder, cube, triangular prism, rectangular prism, cone, square pyramid, triangular pyramid.

Control of Error

Visual.

Direct Purpose

Refinement of the stereognostic sense.

Indirect Purpose

Raising the child’s awareness of geometric solid shapes in both architecture and the world at large.

Age

3 1/2 +

Notes

Some solids have an interesting ability of rotation such as the cone and cylinder, they can roll or spin in ways that a sphere wouldn’t.
Shadows of round – but not sphere shaped – solids such as the ellipsoid and ovoid do in fact match the circle card.

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