This is an outdoor project with 5 stations for students to acquire hands on experience with indirect measuring using different tools, right triangle trig, and similar triangles.
Station 1: The mirror method
Students use a mirror to create similar triangles and measure the height of a tall object.
Station 2: The clinometer method
Students use a clinometer and tangent to solve for the height of a tall object. Directions to make a quick, simple, and cheap clinometer are included.
Station 3: The hypsometer method
Students use a hypsometer and similar triangles to solve for the height of a tall object. Directions to make a quick, simple, and cheap hypsometer are included.
Station 4: Shadow with Similar Triangles
Students use shadows and similar triangles to solve for the height of a tall object.
Station 5: Shadows with Trigonometry
Students use shadows and tangent to solve for the height of a tall object. Station 4 and 5 should actually be completed as one station.
Three reflection questions are included. A general answer key is included, but values will vary based on student data. I spend one day measuring and one day calculating during this project.
Required materials: clinometer (protractor, straw, string, weight), hypsometer (cardboard, straw, string, weight), mirror, multiple tape measures, tall objects, sunny day
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Please download my Indirect Measure Calculator Free to go along with this product. It will generate the answers for you to do a quick check.