Building with Octahedra and Tetrahedra

George Hart

I led a MoMath workshop for Math for America in which teachers and students created structures based on octahedra and tetrahedra.

I began by showing some magnetic polyhedral building blocks and explaining aspects of the "oct-tet" lattice (a.k.a. "FCC" lattice).

Then participants started playing with the blocks, to get a feel for the possible structures.

The blocks are fun to play with, so I wish I had lots more of them.  But this was just the warm-up.

The main activity involved a kit with nodes and struts, designed for making the oct-tet lattice.