UK Primary (3-6)
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Archimedean solids (Investigation)

Have you ever noticed that the leather panels on a soccer ball are not all the same shape?

The black panels are regular pentagons, but the white panels are regular hexagons.

Every black panel is always surrounded by five white panels, and every white panel is surrounded by six panels, which alternate between black and white.

If we flattened every panel on the ball, we end up with a what is called a truncated icosahedron.

This is an Archimedean solid


An Archimedean solid has:

1) Several different regular polygons for faces.


2) The same pattern of faces around the same polygon.

Just like the Platonic solids, there are only a small number of these that exist. There are $13$13 Archimedean solids!

Try printing out the nets for the Archimedean solids from Mathigon and building them at home!

Did you know?

Archimedean solids are named after the Ancient Greek mathematician Archimedes, who first wrote about them.

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