We live in a three dimensional world. We move around in 3D objects. We plan our lives and engineer for 3D activity. We appreciate the beauty of 3D architecture. Three dimensions lifts our understanding of our world from the page of a 2D surface.
Prior Knowledge & Skills
We need to have a 'solid' grasp of 2D shape to get to grips with the 3D world although some find they can visualise in three dimensions quite natural without having to know much about 2D shape. 3D lends itself to exploration of volume and weight so numbers and measurement is important.
Starting from cubes and cuboids we can soon move to large numbers of surfaces. We can check the relationships between vertices, surfaces and edges. Moving on to curved surfaces and sections of solids, visualising and making sense 3D shapes stretches the mathematical abilities of all quite quickly. Something that can be described in words quite easily gets harder to put into mathematical terms and even harder to find solutions for. 3D shape soon blurs the lines of different fields of maths, whether that be algebra or geometry.
Engineers, scientists and architects plan and develop in 3D.
Get an idea of number origins from this PowerPoint: