**ERIC Number:**ED552991

**Record Type:**Non-Journal

**Publication Date:**2013

**Pages:**236

**Abstractor:**As Provided

**Reference Count:**N/A

**ISBN:**978-1-3030-2685-0

**ISSN:**N/A

Tetrahedra and Their Nets: Mathematical and Pedagogical Implications

Mussa, Derege Haileselassie

ProQuest LLC, Ph.D. Dissertation, Columbia University

If one has three sticks (lengths), when can you make a triangle with the sticks? As long as any two of the lengths sum to a value strictly larger than the third length one can make a triangle. Perhaps surprisingly, if one is given 6 sticks (lengths) there is no simple way of telling if one can build a tetrahedron with the sticks. In fact, even though one can make a triangle with any triple of three lengths selected from the six, one still may not be able to build a tetrahedron. At the other extreme, if one can make a tetrahedron with the six lengths, there may be as many 30 different (incongruent) tetrahedra with the six lengths. Although tetrahedra have been studied in many cultures (Greece, India, China, etc.) over thousands of years, there are surprisingly many simple questions about them that still have not been answered. This thesis answers some new questions about tetrahedra, as well raising many more new questions for researchers, teachers, and students. It also shows in an appendix how tetrahedra can be used to illustrate ideas about arithmetic, algebra, number theory, geometry, and combinatorics that appear in the Common Cores State Standards for Mathematics (CCSS -M). In particular it addresses representing three-dimensional polyhedra in the plane. Specific topics addressed are a new classification system for tetrahedra based on partitions of an integer n, existence of tetrahedra with different edge lengths, unfolding tetrahedra by cutting edges of tetrahedra, and other combinatorial aspects of tetrahedra. [The dissertation citations contained here are published with the permission of ProQuest LLC. Further reproduction is prohibited without permission. Copies of dissertations may be obtained by Telephone (800) 1-800-521-0600. Web page: http://www.proquest.com/en-US/products/dissertations/individuals.shtml.]

Descriptors: Geometric Concepts, Geometry, Mathematical Concepts, Arithmetic, Theories, Algebra, State Standards, Academic Standards, Core Curriculum, Mathematics Instruction

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**Publication Type:**Dissertations/Theses - Doctoral Dissertations

**Education Level:**N/A

**Audience:**N/A

**Language:**English

**Sponsor:**N/A

**Authoring Institution:**N/A