Teaching about area and perimeter is something that seems easy enough; however, my students always forget a few important things…
1) They mix the two up and forget which is which
2) They don’t use the proper units
I saw this idea on Teaching Tales Along the Yellow Brick Road’s blog and decided to try it out with my students this year.
It did take a bit of prep time. Before school I made sure to tape the perimeters out on the floor. I really wanted all the perimeters and areas to be different so I sketched it all out on a piece of paper first. I also numbered each shape with masking tape so my students were able to rotate around in groups and record their answers on the data sheet I whipped up.
When it was time for math (after obsessing all day about them walking on the tape and potentially running my masterpieces) the kids were so excited to get to work. They worked with their group members to find the area and perimeter of each shape. I encouraged them to walk around to find the perimeter and step on each tile on the inside to hopefully kinesthetically drill it into their minds. I also made sure they understood the concepts of linear feet and square feet. I think walking in a line to find the perimeter and counting the squares really helped to reinforce this!
Overall the kids had so much fun doing this and really enjoyed themselves! I wish I would have stumbled upon this idea years ago! I’m planning on using some of my Area and Perimeter Assessments as an an exit slip this week. They are differentiated so I hope to see how much my students know. If you’re interested in them, they’re available for FREE in my TpT store. 🙂