When Mathematics and Valentine’s Day collide

On Valentine’s Day, our Maths teacher, Mr Scott, had students investigate mathematical properties made from paper strips. Topology is a branch of mathematics that studies properties via deformations, twisting and stretching of objects.

Students started with a strip of paper with four edges and two faces. Next, the short edges are joined and made into a cylinder with two edges and two faces. The cylinder is then cut in half, becoming two.

After twisting and sticking the corners together, students produced a Mobius strip – an unusual shape with only one edge and side. Next, the strip is cut in half, becoming two thinner Mobius strips with a twisted bottom.

Next, students were asked to predict what would happen if cut in half. All were surprised when the strips became a square frame.

After a couple of twists and turns, students ended up with two intertwined paper strip love hearts.