The concept of area and perimeter has been in use since ancient times and even holds its importance in the present-day scenario. From selecting a specific size wallpaper to set a table in a corner, this geometrical concept finds its usage everywhere.
We all have encountered situations wherein measuring the area and perimeter is crucial but when it comes to learning such a concept, it can be challenging due to certain reasons such as using the right units of measurement, confusion between area and perimeter, and learning and applying the right formula for calculation.
Considering this, Teaching such crucial math concepts with the help of real-world applications can contribute to their concept retention ability along with enhancing problem-solving and analytical thinking skills. Hence, this post outlines various applications of the concept of “area and perimeter” in real-life.
Importance of area and perimeter
Area and perimeter are often confusing for students as these both are related to each other and deal with the same field of study. To clearly differentiate between the two, it is crucial to first make a note of their different uses.
Determining area is essential because it helps us understand how much space we need for certain things or activities such as housing, gardening, or parking. It also helps us determine whether a place has enough resources like food and water, which are required for survival.
On the other hand, the perimeter is essential because it helps us determine whether a place has enough room for certain activities such as playing games and running around without bumping into other people/things; it also helps us understand how long it takes for someone to walk from one point to another without getting lost along the way (unless you’re using GPS).
Applications of area and perimeter in daily life
Learning about real-world applications allows students to connect with their environment and interpret the usage of mathematical concepts. Also, knowing these applications help them find different ways to solve related real-life problems that further enhance their reasoning and problem-solving skills. Given below are some of the important examples and applications of “area and perimeter” in our day-to-day life.
1. Measurement of land or fields:
To protect the field from animals, farmers fence their fields. Also, you must have noticed the boundaries of the park are cemented. For such instances, the perimeter finds its usage.
On the other hand, the area is calculated during buying and selling of the land in any shape it is. Residential areas are calculated in square feet and agricultural land is calculated in acres.
2. Construction of homes and buildings:
Another important real-life application of area and perimeter is its usage in determining the geometrical aspects of homes and buildings before and during construction. The room you are seated in has an area and perimeter and has been designed carefully with precise measurements. Similarly, all the rooms are combined to contribute to a broad area and perimeter.
3. Construction of roads and Bridges
A well-constructed and smooth road is every commuter’s dream. To make this dream come true, a lot is required. Besides having good quality raw material, it is essential that proper planning and survey is carried out. The survey also includes the dimensions and geometrical aspects, such as the area and perimeter of the road.
Similarly, building bridges also requires a lot of planning and surveying. The area and perimeter values of essential points help maintain bridges’ symmetry, which is extremely important to prevent the breakage of bridges.
4. Determining the material required
While adding tiles of certain dimensions in a room of certain dimensions, or estimating the paint required for a wall, the area is calculated.
On the other hand, adding doors, fence, and cabin glasses for the boundary, the perimeter is calculated. Also, while installing tents, the pipes are used to mark the boundaries which are measured with the help of the perimeter.
5. Measuring orbits and planetary motions
For a long time, astronomers have been measuring the distance between planets, their orbitary motions, and much more. The use of area and perimeter in this field has served as the basis for several laws and theorems.
6. Computer graphics
Pictorial and audio-visual representations of objects have become an essential part of several industries, including entertainment and education. These pictorial and audio-visual representations must be precise and require the aid of area and perimeter. The gaming industry also extensively uses area and perimeter to ensure the graphics are accurate and keep the gamers hooked.
7. Art and Fashion
An exciting use of area and perimeter is found in the world of art. It is not limited only to painting and sketching but opens doors to the world of apparel designing and accessories. It is self-explanatory how area and perimeter are essential in the world of fashion. Similarly, in the art world, painters and designers must be accurate with their brush strokes.
Benefits of studying area and perimeter
Area and perimeter have everyday occurrences and practical applications. Besides, the following are the benefits of understanding these concepts clearly.
- Studying area and perimeter thoroughly forms one of the most important fundamental concepts. They help students develop their analytical thinking skills, logical reasoning skills, problem-solving methodology, and deductive reasoning abilities. An all-over development like this enhances the holistic growth of the students.
- Area and perimeter allow students to map the area and boundary of various regions, thus allowing for the cultivation of the ability to be practically and logically conclusive.
- The concepts of area and perimeter find several applications in the real world. They help us decide which materials to use and which design is best suited for construction purposes. Hence, students aspiring to be civil and structural engineers and architects must thoroughly understand these concepts.
Understanding the concepts of area and perimeter with games
Math can be fun, but not for everybody. We understand and embrace the fact that every child has different learning abilities. However, we cannot rule out that concepts such as area and perimeter are of prime importance for students.
So, we thought of a fun way to help you teach your kids all about area and perimeter. And what can be more fun than learning through games? So let’s find out!
1. Decorate your classroom
The activity is simple and easy to carry out. Since some kids may have trouble remembering the difference between area and perimeter, visual aids can come to their rescue. Studies have shown that visual aids are an effective way to enhance comprehension and retention ability among students.
For this game, you have to provide your students with cutouts shaped as ‘area’ and ‘perimeter’ and ask them to paste them on objects in the classroom.
For example, ask them to paste ‘perimeter’ at the boundaries of the black/whiteboard and ‘area’ within the boundaries of the board. In this way, every time they pass the black/whiteboards, they will see the two and hence, slowly retain the information.
2. The Drawing graph
Provide students with graph sheets and ask them to sketch themselves along the lines in the graph sheet. Once done, ask them to determine the perimeter of their figures. While perimeter may be easy to determine, for the area, ask them to divide the figure into sub-figures and then determine the area individually for each figure. Later on, they must add all the areas obtained to find the area of the big picture!
3. The Scavenger hunt
Kids love to engage in mind-boggling activities such as scavenger hunts. There are several ways to flag off a scavenger hunt.
For area, you could tape shapes on the floor and ask students to use the tiles to determine the value. For perimeter, you could hang various shapes around the classroom or corridor and ask students to solve and find the value.
Area and perimeter are fundamental concepts in geometry that students need to apply both in and outside the classroom in different real-life scenarios. The ability to use these skills effectively can help students solve problems and make decisions in a variety of situations.
To help students get a hang of this concept, we can make use of interactive alternatives to traditional teaching as it engages students and promotes effective learning. Apart from using real-world applications given above, activities and board games can be employed!
- Machaba, F. M. (2016, January 1). The concepts of area and perimeter : insights and misconceptions of Grade 10 learners : original research. https://journals.co.za/doi/abs/10.4102/pythagoras.v37i1.304
- Karakoç, G., & Alacacı, C. (2015). Real world connections in high school mathematics curriculum and teaching. Turkish Journal of Computer and Mathematics Education, 6(1), 31-46