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Surface Area + Volume 2-21-12 to 2-24-12

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

So I am thinking of revamping the blog. I have been out of practice when posting the SPIs and information. I'd like to get back into that habit, but also I have been making lots of resources for my math class these past three years, and my initial intention was to always share them for students and teachers alike. Due to many other obligations, that never came to fruition. So I will be figuring out a way to upload files to this blog. Look for things like flashcards to print, games to print, activities to print, and flipcharts to use (teachers) 

This week we will be working on Surface & Volume.

Surface Area (for rectangular prisms) has a sometimes complicated formula for elementary kids to remember. It looks a little like this.

Surface Area = [(LxW)+(LxH)+(WxH)]x2

It makes it out to be a lot more complicated than it needs to be. I had another teacher tell me at some point about the Y method. The Y method is a fantastic way to teach Surface Area. 

Here are my general steps I tell my students.

First: LABEL, Surface Area. (I do this so that hopefully they will remember how to do this method much further in the future for TCAP :))

Second: Then students are usually either given the Length, Width, and Height or even better--I let them choose three numbers. Then they choose their own unit (cm, in, ft, yd, etc.)

L: 4 ft
W: 5 ft
H:  2 ft

Third: They then draw a Y. On each corner of the Y goes their numbers they created or were assigned. 

Fourth:  They then multiple each of the two corners to create three new numbers. (Notice the underlined red.)

Fifth:  They take each of those three numbers and find its sum, and then double it.

The formula for Volume isn't so bad. Most people still remember this formula. 

Volume=Length x Width x Height 

I make sure my students write the formula first. Then students "plug" in the values for L, W, and H. 


Signing off, Mrs. Burger :-)


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About Me

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My name is Mrs. Hanah Burger. This is my 4th year teaching 5th grade math at Blythe-Bower Elementary, and I love what I do. My goal is to make as many math nerds out there to love numbers and change the world with their knowledge! I just finished my Masters, and I hope to one day go back for my EDs. I have two amazing kiddos, Mikaela (6) and Peyton (3), as well as a great hubby, Jonathan. They mean the world to me. :0D


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