Constructing Rectangular Prisms

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Students work in groups of 4.

Materials:
  1. 2 sheets of lavender* paper (construction paper or a similar weight)
  2. 2 sheets of purple* paper (construction paper or a similar weight)
  3. 4 pair scissors
  4. 4 rulers
  5. Scotch tape

    *or any two contrasting colors of paper
Procedure:
  1. Each group is to make three rectangular prisms.
  2. Each group member measures and cuts out his or her part of the prism. [Measurements for each prism are given below.]
  3. The 6 sides are taped together to form a rectangular prism.
Evaluation:
  1. As each rectangular prism is finished, the group "checker" takes the product to Quality Control (the teacher, who has a ruler!) and the prism is measured.
  2. The product is marked perfect or imperfect.
  3. Groups are challenged to make at least one perfect product.

This gets the students working together, thinking of face, edge, vertex, and three dimensions.

Rectangular prism ONE
  1. Group member 1 makes a rectangle 4 inches by 2 inches using lavender paper.
  2. Group member 2 makes a rectangle 4 inches by 2 inches using lavender paper.
  3. Group member 3 makes two rectangles 4 inches by 6 inches using purple paper.
  4. Group member 4 makes two rectangles 2 inches by 6 inches using purple paper.
Rectangular prism TWO
  1. Group member 1 makes a rectangle 3 inches by 4 inches using lavender paper.
  2. Group member 2 makes a rectangle 3 inches by 4 inches using lavender paper.
  3. Group member 3 makes two rectangles 3 inches by 5 inches using purple paper.
  4. Group member 4 makes two rectangles 4 inches by 5 inches using purple paper.
Rectangular prism THREE
  1. Group member 1 makes a rectangle 2 inches by 3 inches using lavender paper.
  2. Group member 2 makes a rectangle 2 inches by 3 inches using lavender paper.
  3. Group member 3 makes two rectangles 2 inches by 4 inches using purple paper.
  4. Group member 4 makes two rectangles 3 inches by 4 inches using purple paper.

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