Mr Shape Reshape Gadget

Topic: Flat Shapes vs Solid Shapes

“Hurray! Hurray!” Uncle Math is jumping out of joy. But why? The kids are wondering too.

“Finally, my gadget is ready! Yay! Yay!” he screams. Unable to understand anything, Triho questions, “What gadget? What is ready? Please show us”. Uncle Math calms down and ready to show his new gadget.

“This is my new gadget, Mr Shape Reshape. This gadget can convert flat shapes into solid shapes”, explains Uncle Math. “Eh?” murmurs Cirho scratching his head. Still, unclear what is happening.

To help the kids understand, Uncle Math gives Cirho a magical paper cutting that always stands in the air without falling. He then, grabs the new gadget and says, “Mr Shape Reshape, convert this flat shape into a solid. Go!” As the light from the gadget falls on the circle, it becomes a sphere. “Wow!” says Cirho. The kids are surprised.

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But Triho has a question. “I love Mr Shape Reshape gadget Uncle Math. But, I do not understand the difference between the old flat shape and the new solid shape”, he asks. Uncle Math smiles and says, “Alright! Let us do one thing”, he says and places a square cutting on Squarho’s head, a triangle cutting on Triho’s, and a rectangle cutting on Cirha’s head.

“Now, clap your hands”, he instructs. The kids follow his instructions. “Clap!” They hear a loud clapping sound.

Uncle Math now uses the gadget on these magical paper cuttings. The gadget converts a square into a cube, a rectangle into a cuboid, and a triangle into a cone. Everybody is happy. The gadget works like a trick.

“Now, let us take the cube, cuboid, sphere, and cone to repeat the same clap exercise. Come on!” instructs Uncle Math. The kids follow his instruction and try to clap. But this time they could not clap.

“We could clap using the old flat shapes because they are 2D shapes. These 2D shapes have only two dimensions: length and height. Whereas, we could not clap later, because these are solid shapes. The soli shapes are 3D shapes as they have three dimensions: length, height, and width”.

He adds, “If you observe the 3D shapes carefully, you will see that all the 3D shapes are made up of 2D shapes only”.

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“Oh, I get it now! All the 3D shapes create a space whereas 2D shapes don’t. For example, I cannot put an object in a 2D shape and carry it. Whereas, I can easily put an object in a 3D shape and carry it because it has the width. Am I right Uncle Math?” says Cirha. “Absolutely right!” says Uncle Math. The kids are clear now. There is no confusion.

It is time to head back home. Kids say bye to Uncle Math and leave.

Way back, Squarho spots stones and a house. “All these are 3D shapes too!” he says. Others agree with him. It was definitely a fun-filled day.

We Learnt That…

  • 2D shapes are flat objects. They only have two dimensions, length and height.
  • 3D shapes are solid objects. They have three dimensions, length, height and width.
  • All the 3D shapes are made up of 2D shapes.
  • Majority of the shapes and objects around us are solid shapes.
  • Trying is more important than solving a question.

Let’s Discuss!

  • What was the name of Uncle Math’s new gadget? What was special about it?
  • How did Uncle Math explain the meaning of flat and solid shapes?
  • What does 2D mean? Give examples of 2D shapes.
  • What does 3D mean? Give examples of 3D shapes.
  • Can you name some 2D and 3D shapes around you?

Please refer this guide by Fun2Do Labs for teaching shapes to kids :