Source
MATH
Scholastic MATH puts a new spin on learning math with real-world examples, skill-building exercises, puzzles, comic strips, and more!
Subscribe
Headquarters of the Longaberger Company in Newark, Ohio. (The Longaberger Company)

Crazy Construction

Find out about these one-of-a-kind buildings. Then calculate their surface area.

<p> The Walter Pyramid, a sports stadium, in Long Beach, California (The Walter Pyramid, California State University, Long Beach) </p><p> The Big Apple in Ontario, Canada (Beanstock Images / Masterfile)</p>

The Walter Pyramid, a sports stadium, in Long Beach, California (The Walter Pyramid, California State University, Long Beach)

The Big Apple in Ontario, Canada (Beanstock Images / Masterfile)

Let’s say you’re driving through the streets of Newark, Ohio. You look up to see a picnic basket that is more than 100 feet tall. Before you pinch yourself to see if you’re dreaming, look a little closer. This giant picnic basket has windows and a door—it’s actually the headquarters of picnic basket maker the Longaberger Company. The world is full of unique buildings like this one.

There’s the Big Apple, a bakery in Ontario, Canada, and the Walter Pyramid, a sports stadium in Long Beach, California. And though these buildings are very different, they have at least one thing in common: Each began as a design on paper or a computer screen.

Ron Rioux, an architect from Portland, Maine, says designing buildings involves a lot of math. “Math—especially geometry—is critically important for what we do,” he says.

Part of an architect’s job is to figure out the surface area for each building he or she designs. Why is this important? By calculating a building’s surface area, architects can determine how much material will be needed for the building’s exterior.

Calculate the surface areas of some of the world’s coolest buildings to see how they compare with the surface area of a school building.

SURFACE AREA FORMULAS

Remember: To find the area of a rectangle or square, multiply the width or length by the height.

 

SURFACE AREA OF A SPHERE=
4 × π × radius squared = 4πr2

SURFACE AREA OF A SQUARE PYRAMID =
base area + .5 × base perimeter × slant height

SURFACE AREA OF A RECTANGULAR PRISM =
(2 × base area) + (2 × side area) + (2 × side area)

SURFACE AREA OF A TRAPEZOIDAL PRISM =
base perimeter × prism’s height + 2 × base area

Calculate the surface areas of some of the world’s coolest buildings to see how they compare with the surface area of a school building.

This article originally appeared in the March 4, 2013 issue of Math. For more from Math, click here.

  • Teacher Store
  • The Teacher Store  
    From Sea to Shining Sea: Ohio

    From Sea to Shining Sea: Ohio

    by Nancy Kline

    This book gives an overview of the history, geography, economy, and culture of Ohio, the Buckeye State.

    Series Information

    Take a tour of Tombstone, a drive along the Extraterrestrial Highway, or visit a colonial theme park in a state that's named for a Tudor queen. You'll find them all in the exciting series that celebrates the history and geography, people and culture, sights and cuisines that make each of America's 50 states unique — from sea to shining sea.

    $5.96 You save: 25%
    Paperback Book | Grades 4-5
    Add To Cart
    Educators Only
    From Sea to Shining Sea: Ohio
    Grades 4-5 $5.96
    Add To Cart
  • Teacher Store
  • The Teacher Store  
    Minecraft Construction Handbook

    Minecraft Construction Handbook

    by Matthew Needler;Phil Southam

    If you can dream it, you can build it in Minecraft! This official guide will give you tips and tricks on how to be a creative genius!

    You can make theme parks with incredible waterslide rides, or entire pirate coves complete with galleons! Is there nothing that can't be achieved in Minecraft? Here the experts talk you through amazing constructs which range from awe-inspiring cathedrals to wacky inventions--like the hilarious animal cannon that catapults cows out to sea! Find out which are Notch's personal favorites and get step-by-step instructions to fuel your own creative genius. Be ore-some!

    $4.49 You save: 25%
    Paperback Book | Grades 3-5
    Add To Cart
    Educators Only
    Minecraft Construction Handbook
    Grades 3-5 $4.49
    Add To Cart
Privacy Policy
EMAIL THIS

* YOUR FIRST NAME ONLY

* FRIEND'S FIRST NAME ONLY

* FRIEND'S EMAIL ADDRESS

MESSAGE
Here's something interesting from Scholastic.com