Puzzle Cube Challenge (PHOTOS)

boys at a desk with a geometric cube

Eighth graders put their design skills to the test with the Project Lead the Way Puzzle Cube Challenge.

The problem tasked students with designing a three dimensional puzzle system that met specific criteria, such as using only 3/4-inch cubes to create interlocking pieces of varying shapes. The design criteria were:

  1. The puzzle must be fabricated from 27 – ¾” plastic cubes.
  2. The puzzle system must contain exactly five puzzle pieces.
  3. The five puzzle pieces must assemble to form a 2 ¼” cube.
  4. Each individual puzzle piece must consist of at least four, but no more than six cubes that are permanently attached to each other.
  5. No two puzzle pieces can be the same.
  6. Some puzzle parts should interlock.

The students used an app called GeoGebra to help them create 3D renderings of the puzzle pieces and experiment with different designs.