For example, here's a

*. Also known as a box to most of us. But to mathematicians, it's also a*

**rectangular prism****, or**

*cuboid**, or*

**convex polyhedron****, or**

*right rectangular hexahedron***. And if those names aren't enough to scare you, it's shown here in unfolded and 3-dimensional forms.**

*rectangular parallelepiped*(

*I drew this manually with my Illustrator software so please excuse me if the shapes are not perfect!*)There are 6

**faces**; each one is a

**. (Ignore the folding tabs.) It has 12**

*rectangle***edges**and 8

**vertices.**

The long side is called the

**, the vertical side the**

*length***, and the other side the**

*height***.**

*width or depth*You can draw a

**between any two non-adjacent vertices in a single plane (as shown by the red line) or a**

*diagonal***line between any two non-adjacent vertices in space (as shown by the blue line).**

*space diagonal*Looking at the diagram, the dimensions

**X**

**, Y**and

**Z**

- can be multiplied like this to get the

**: X x Y x Z = Volume (given in cubic units)**

*volume*- can be manipulated like this to get the

**: 2XY + 2XZ + 2YZ = Surface Area (given in square units)**

*surface area*Take a whole bunch of little rectangular cuboid shapes like this, combine them together, and you can make almost anything, even a car with a wide track!

Not bad, eh?

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