No more guns and robots- using 3D imaging technology in the classroom

RealD glasses used in 3D movie theaters.

Image via Wikipedia

You are teaching 2D views of 3D shapes. You think that the best way to do this may be to give them a physical object to hold and rotate in their hands. That way they’ll easily be able to draw the plans and elevations, won’t they? So you hand out the Multi-link cubes for them to create their own 3D shapes from which to draw some plans and elevations. Within 2 mins all the 12 year old boys have made guns or robots from their Multi-link cubes which may be slightly distracting from the lesson objective…

What’s the solution? Clear expectations, firm reprimands? Go with the tide, let them do it for an agreed 1 minute then they have to knuckle down? Possibly. Or, get them all to put on their 3D glasses to view a 3D shape projecting out of the board which can be rotated to suit whichever 2D view they want to draw?

Check out how the Abbey School in Reading are using 3D imaging technology to improve their teaching and learning in biology:

3D proves a hit in the classroom

Imagine how we could use this technology in the maths classroom! Here are just a few of the potential applications that have popped into my mind over the last few minutes:

  • Drawing 2D views of 3D shapes.
  • Nets- Imagine a 3D shape unfolding to make the net infront of their eyes!
  • Surface area of 3D shapes- Rotating a 3D shape so that they can calculate the area of each face individually then summing them all.
  • Volume of 3D shapes- showing how a 3D shape can be constructed from individual centi-cubes.

I’m not sure if any of this software has been created yet within the mathematics context the way it has been for biology. It must only be a matter of time…

Think of the potential!

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2 Responses

  1. Cynthia says:

    Hi William!

    If you’re looking for 3D software for math modules, you should check out this link:

    The EON Experience portal is home to thousands of 3D models and scenes. The Space, Geometry, and Measurement application was developed using EON software and gives great 3D visuals of objects in their true form. Check it out!


  1. 27/12/2010

    […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by My Own Maths Tutor. My Own Maths Tutor said: No more guns and robots- using 3D imaging technology in the classroom #math #maths […]

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