# Surface Area of a Cube

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EFT4: Math: Task 5: Surface Area of Cubes

Introducing Surface Area

For a fifth or sixth grade class to understand the concept surface area in relation to a cube they need to understand what a cube is first. They will learn that a cube is a special type of rectangular solid. The length, width, and height of a cube are exactly the same. After explaining what a cube is they will need to understand what it means to find the surface area. The surface area is not the same as finding the volume of a cube. The surface area is the area on the outside of a three-dimensional shape, like the cube. The surface area of a cube is six times the surface area of one side of the cube. There are six sides to one cube, after learning this about a cube the appropriate formula to find the surface area is:

Surface area of a cube=6s^2 (The “6” represents the number of sides; “s” represents one side of a cube; “^2” represents taking one side and timing it by itself; the end result gives the surface area of a cube). Prerequisite Skills

The necessary prerequisite skills required to determine the surface area of a cube is to be able to multiple, recognizes what a cube looks like, able to identify the length of one side, know that a cube has six equal sides, and the students will needs to be able to calculate the area of a square in order to calculate the surface area of a cube. Students will also need to recall that 3-dimensional objects are measured out in “square units.”

Forming the Cube

First students will learn that 2-dimensional objects are flat and only deal with length and width; whereas 3-dimensional deal with length, width, and height, with height giving them the 3-dimensional aspect. The best way to have students understand each concept is to show the students what a deconstructed 3-dimensional cube looks like (2-dimensional) and then shape that into the 3-dimensional form. This would be a great way to incorporate a...

References: Long, Lynette. (2009). Painless geometry. Hauppauge, New York: Barron’s Educational Series, Inc.

Lorandini, Caryl. (2012). E-Z pre-algebra. Hauppauge, New York: Barron’s Educational Series, Inc.

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