Using Matt Parker’s Platonic solid video with kids

Saw this neat video about Platonic solids from Matt Parker a few days ago:

and decided to try to use it with the boys. The obvious idea was to use our Zometool set to make a “hyper-diamond,” though actually making the shape proved to be tricky.

I used this video to get a better look at the shape:

and also looked here to see some other Zome versions of the 24-cell:

The 24-Cell on Dave Richter’s Zometool website

It was interesting to learn that there were multiple ways to make the 24-cell out of Zome struts. I chose the way that uses the green struts because that was the easiest shape to see in the videos. I built the shape myself because the connections were a little more delicate than I expected. Getting the green struts to connect without other struts disconnecting was particularly tricky (or maybe it was just that I was tired and have a cold . . . ). Anyway, here’s the shape:

And here’s what the boys had to say about the shape after watching the videos. It is always really interesting to hear kids talk about the 4th dimension:

Older son first:

Younger son second (and I love how he describes the rotating shape in the video):

So, a fun project giving kids an interesting peek at a 4 dimensional shape. Thanks to Matt Parker for inspiring this project.

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