I am a huge proponent of application when application is possible. I realize sometimes application is not possible at the level you are teaching. For example, my senior son was working on Calculus the other day and had to recall the exponent rules from Algebra 1 (8th grade for him). He hasn’t needed to use exponent rules in any other class AND when I teach Algebra, I know it’s near impossible to find application for the rules. Clearly they have a purpose, but he didn’t see that purpose until four years later. Application wasn’t possible at the time he was taught the rules.
Surface area and volume, however, is VERY applicable. Last year, I switched my focus from using the formulas to finding online calculators (Read about it here) and just applying the formulas. I created many application type activities, including measuring objects in the classroom. We ended the unit with our robot project (referenced in the book Make Math Not Suck), which the students LOVE!
This year, I wanted to make my life and my student’s lives a little easier. There isn’t ONE calculator online that will calculate every surface area and volume problem we encounter. Teaching students the skills to look for these calculators is a good skill! The issue was the time involved searching for a calculator that would work, then when we did find one, there were some inappropriate ads on some of the pages.
So I fixed it! I created a SURFACE ARE AND VOLUME CALCULATOR that I can give to my students. They still need to know which one to use but they don’t have to search the internet to find one.
Please use this with your classes. Please DO NOT sell this to others or pass it off as your own. I drew each figure on my iPad and I entered each formula in the cells. It took some time! I LOVE when people use my stuff (for FREE) but it upsets me when they take it and sell it on TpT as their own. DON’T BE THAT PERSON!
Here are some quick links to previous posts about surface area and volume applications to use with the calculator and a BRAND NEW remote learning performance event.
I hope you find this useful! Please let me know if you use it. I would love your feedback.