This week I’ve been doing a fun 3d printing project with my younger son who is learning trig (from Art of Problem Solving’s Prealgebra book). We have used 3d printing to explore 2d geometry before – see some of the projects here, for example:
This week I had my son create, code, and then print some simple 2d shapes – the project combines ideas from trig, geometry, and algebra.
Here’s his description of the first shape -> a 3-4-5 triangle:
Here’s the 2nd shape – a 7-6-3 triangle. Creating this shape shows how ideas from introductory trigonometry come into play:
Finally, here’s a regular pentagon that we made yesterday. Unfortunately we made a mistake in the code for the print – mixing up a Sin() and a Cos(), but here is explanation of how to make the shape is correct:
I’d forgotten how useful 3d printing can be as a tool to explore 2d geometry – this week was a happy reminder of how fun those activities can be!