Riverview School, El Mirage, Arizona

7th and 8th grade math magician Mary Morris says:

"I asked the kids to make 2D tessellations. They did. Have a look here. Then I asked them to make Platonic Solids... that is, 3D objects made from regular polygons... and that they did, too. You can see those on this page. Aren't they impressive? Then, I asked them to make flying nutty monkeys, and they did that, too!!! Next week, I'm going to ask them to make 6 dimensional timetraveling geometric solids from phoenix feathers and spraypaint. And you know what? They'll do it!! Muuuhahahahaaa!"

Then the school nurse, Mrs. Poppelhoffersnookerpeep, took Ms. Morris away to a big soft room, and made the kids promise to pay for Ms. Morris' aspirin and most of the spraypaint removal this time. This is progress, because last time the kids tried to remove the spraypaint from Ms. Morris themselves, and learned a valuable lesson about turpentine, Ms. Morris' patience, and blowtorches.

Click on any Polaroid™ to see a large version of it, with a description that's certified true by Santa™ & the Easter Badger™.

Notice Jose's dodecahedron. It's not just decorated. It's got a geometric tessellation on it. The tiles stretch from one facet to another. The tessellation contains stars: pointy tiles like stars are notoriously difficult to put in tessellations. Jose's done a particularly good piece of math art.

We can see that these dodecahedrons are made from 12 pentagons, because Jose's went supernova, Brandi's flowers went flat, and Aryka's flowers are ... oh, wait! Ms. Morris is trying to tell me something. She says that the flat pictures are pre-assembly photos. That's what these Platonic solids look like before their walls are glued together.

What you don't see is Vice Principal Kipperbreth and the janitor / art teacher Mr. Hiffinpickle, who were involved in the unfortunate Stapler Incident of 2011, before the kids were asked to please use glue, which has fewer sharp points than staples. We wish Mrs. Kipperbreth and Mr. Hiffinpickle a speedy recovery, and ask that they please learn to approach Ms. Morris' students from the front, so there won't be any more unfortunate combinations of staplers and kids being startled to discover a teacher behind them. The nurse says the scars will fade, someday, and Mr. Hiffinpickle's nose should grow back. Mostly.

The school lawyer, Mr. Schtoppenguppy, would like to remind the witnesses that "We know who you are, and we know where you live." So please don't report Aryka, Ganley, and Markeshia to the police this time. They promise not to use a chainsaw next time, and anyway, chainsaws made a really pretty flower-shaped purple crayon pattern where Mr. Schtoppenguppy's unremarkable haircut used to be.

Do crayon stains come out, if you scrub hard enough with soap? How about staples?

By the way, we're hoping to send Ms. Morris' class a unique gift this year: "Plato's Jewels", a unique kind of paper sculpture that you fold, and stick together to make sparkly versions of all the five Platonic Solids. They're made using "Ozzigami". Ozzigami, invented by popular tessellation artist Bruce Bilney, is a way of reinforcing paper sculptures that is as yet virtually unknown outside of Australia. Keep an eye on this gallery in the coming months, because we'll be posting photos of Ms. Morris' kids making Plato's Jewels. (Hey, kids, this time please don't put the class pet inside the dodecahedrons. Last time, the rabbit almost starved to death before Adrian noticed that one of the sculptures was shaking, and I don't think I need to mention that barracudas need fresh river water every day, not just when Ms. Morris isn't looking.

And they hate staples even more than Mrs. Kipperbreth does.

In closing, we congratulate Ms. Morris' talented teens, and can't wait to see what they make next as long as it doesn't involve staples, fish, or Mrs. Kipperbreth's nose.

barracuda mascot of Riverview school, Arizona staplers and birds barracuda