Volume and Surface Area of Prisms and Pyramids Fluency Practice

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Students will be able to calculate the volume and surface area of any rectangular or triangular prism and square pyramids.

Big Idea

Students get the opportunity to tutor their struggling peers on finding volume and surface area of prisms and pyramids.


10 minutes

Opener:  As students enter the room, they will immediately begin working on the opener. For this particular lesson, students need to work independently on the opener, as they will be regrouped in a few moments based on their level of knowledge with the content. As students turn in the opener, I will quickly grade them and make note of which students got all 6 questions correct, or close to it.  Then, I will move students around so that each table has a student with good understanding of the concept sitting at it.

Learning Target: After regrouping the students, I will address the day’s learning targets.  In today’s lesson, the intended target is “I can calculate volume and surface area given any triangular prism, rectangular prism, or square pyramid.

Scaffolding Ideas


40 minutes

Volume and Surface Area of Prisms and Pyramids Practice Activity:  I will pass out the day’s assignment which has 8 different figures on it, and students are asked to calculate the surface area and volume of each one.  I have included the answers on the assignment, so that students will know immediately if they have the answer correct - this method of giving students the answers first really helps them to persevere with the math - most students are not satisfied with a wrong answer and will continue to work until they get it right (MP 1).  Also, since I am employing student leaders to help me today, it is important that they are supplying their groups with correct information!  During the activity, I will ask that students help their tables as needed – I have previously addressed what it means to help another student, so students know my expectation is that help is given where needed – we don’t give answers or do each other’s work (MP 3).  As students lead their tables, I will listen in and provide assistance as needed.  I want to give my experts time to shine, so I will only butt in when necessary.  I will continually circle the room, however, as I want to make sure correct information is being provided.  Students will use tools (pictures, calculators) as needed to help them with their work (MP 5).


10 minutes

Opener Redo: To summarize this lesson, I will give the students another copy of the blank Opener, and have them rework the same problems.  I will ask that students turn in the opener when finished.