10 – 12

Make a geodesic dome or sphere

Arts & crafts

Make a geodesic dome or sphere

What to do with this activity?

A geodesic sphere or dome is a lightweight but very strong round structure made from interconnecting triangles. If the round structure is complete it's a geodesic sphere, like in the photo above. You might have seen a geodesic dome (half sphere) in a playground making an interesting climbing frame. 

You can make a colourful geodesic dome or sphere using plastic drinking straws and pipe cleaners. Here are instructions from Babbledabbledo.

There's a bit of maths involved in this. For instance, there are two lengths of straw that make up the triangles and you need to work out  the relative lengths using a formula and calculator. With the longer pieces you form pentagons (five sided shapes), while the shorter straws make the triangles inside the pentagons. 

If you are interested, have a look at this online calculator tool that helps you calculate the correct two lengths for the struts depending on the size you want the dome to end up. 

Here's an alternative way to make a geodesic dome using rolled up newspaper - these instructions from PBS. And here's a video of one being made by a group of kids in Boston Science Museum.

 

 

 

 

  • Why am I doing this?

    Playing is one of the most effective ways children learn. It builds your child’s concentration and thinking skills as well as building their skills in using numbers, seeing patterns and being able to group things together. Playing games with others helps their social skills and gives them a chance to practice things they have heard and seen.

  • How can I do more?

    Playing games that involve words are great for increasing your child’s vocabulary. Games that involve dices and numbers help with maths and logical reasoning.

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