In this activity students will cut out 24 right triangle problems and sort them into four categories according to which method would be best for solving the problem: SOHCAHTOA, Pythagorean Theorem, 45-45-90, and 30-60-90.
I did this activity with my students on the 2nd day of unit review for special right triangles. With the test the next day, I felt it was important for them to understand how to distinguish which method of solving to use for each right triangle problem, since the test would incorporate all methods randomly given.
I put the students in groups of two and this worked well. I did not require them to actually solve the problems, but you could easily incorporate that into your activity. I liked how this activity sparked some conversation about how sometimes there is more than one method that will work. In those cases, we discussed which method would be the easiest or would yield the correct type of answer format, decimal form versus radical.