How to Make a Geodesic Dome

I don’t want this blog to turn into just teaching stuff. What I am going to do for today is show you how to make a geodesic dome. While I did use this in my classroom, this is something anyone can do.

A geodesic dome is not a flat dome. It makes little triangles as it connects. One of the best examples of a geodesic dome is EPCOT at Disney. But we aren’t going to make that one that big. Ours is going to be made out of toothpicks and gumdrops.

You will need:

  • Eleven (11) gumdrops
  • Twenty-five (25) toothpicks

How to make this:

  1. Using five toothpicks and five gumdrops, make a pentagon.

2. Take two toothpicks, and stick them into a gumdrop pointed up, but facing opposite directions. They should look like bugs’ antennae or rabbit ears like you would see on an old television set.

3. Repeat Step 2 on each of the remaining four gumdrops. You should be able to easily see five triangles.

4. Connect the two toothpicks to make them into triangles using a gumdrop. You should have five triangles. (So by this point, you have used 10 gumdrops and 15 toothpicks)

5. Using five toothpicks, create a second pentagon by connecting each gumdrop at the top of the triangles to the ones nest to it.

6. Using your last five toothpicks, stick one in each gumdrop, pointing it up and towards the center (it is a dome after all)

7. Finally, using your last remaining gumdrop, connect it to all 5 toothpicks.

And there you have it! A geodesic dome! All of my 7th graders had fun building this! I let a couple other adults try it as well, and they thought it was fun too. It’s a good STEM activity, and it is so cheap and easy to make. I bought all the supplies I needed at the Dollar Tree, and I was able to get everything I needed for all of my students that would be available to do this for only $9.

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