About this resource:
This yummy and engaging lesson activates students’ prior knowledge about using nets to find the surface area of rectangular prisms and introduces the formula S = Ph+2B.
Using the step-by-step handout as a guide, students will measure the dimensions of a box of Nerds® candy and label those measures on drawings of both the net and the solid figure. They will first use the net to find the total surface area of the candy box. Then, using the drawing of the solid, they will discover that the perimeter of the base (P) multiplied by the height of the prism (h) will yield the lateral surface area in a much more efficient way. They will then add the area of the two congruent bases to find the total surface area.
Not only does this lesson use a high-interest manipulative to draw a connection between the net and the surface area formula, it is also structured in such a way that many kids will be able to arrive at the formula themselves, thus gaining a deeper and more permanent understanding of the formula.
Complete instructions and a key are included and available in the preview. I also included an optional cover for teachers who use interactive notebooks – just print the cover on the reverse side of the handout so kids can fold the page and glue it into their notebooks after completing the activity.
(Please note that Nerds® is a registered trademark of Societe des Produits Nestle, which is in no way affiliated with this educational product or its author.)
- A copy of the handout for each student
- A box of Nerds® candy for each student
- Colored pencils (optional)
For more resources related to surface area, check out my:
Surface Area and Volume Koosh Ball Game for Interactive Whiteboards
Surface Area Stations Activity
For more food and candy-based geometry lessons, check out my:
Volume Cone-acopia: A Candy-based lesson on Volume of Cones
Spheres Are Sweet: A Candy-based Lesson on Volume
Pythagorean Theorem Modeling Activity with Cheez-its
Thanks so much for dropping by my store, and I hope you and your students enjoy these activities. Your questions and feedback are welcome and appreciated! If you would like to receive a notification when I post new products (I list them for 50% during the first 48 hours), click the green star next to my name to follow me.
For Texas Teachers:
8(7)(B) – Use previous knowledge of surface area to make connections to the formulas for lateral and total surface area and determine solutions for problems involving rectangular prisms, triangular prisms, and cylinders.
8(8)(C) – Estimate measures and use formulas to solve application problems involving lateral and total surface area and volume.
8.8A - Find lateral and total surface area of prisms, pyramids, and cylinders using concrete models and nets (two-dimensional models).
8.8B - Connect models of prisms, cylinders, pyramids, spheres, and cones to formulas for volume of these objects.
8.8C - Estimate measurements and use formulas to solve application problems involving lateral and total surface area and volume.
Thanks again, and best wishes!