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This lesson provided by:
Author:Kellan Selle
System: Hoover City
School: Spain Park High School
Lesson Plan ID: 24041

Find that Height!


The students are to find the height of several objects around the school. They will set up proportions in order to find the height of tall objects not easily measured. Students will use a digital camera to record the objects they are measuring.
This lesson plan was created as a result of the Girls Engaged in Math and Science, GEMS Project funded by the Malone Family Foundation.

Content Standard(s):
TC2(6-8) 2. Publish digital products that communicate curriculum concepts.
TC2(6-8) 5. Use basic features of word processing, spreadsheets, databases, and presentation software.
TC2(6-8) 9. Practice responsible and legal use of technology systems and digital content.
TC2(6-8) 14. Use digital tools to generate new ideas, products, or processes.
MA2015(7) 2. Recognize and represent proportional relationships between quantities. [7-RP2]
Local/National Standards:

AHSGE: VII-3 Apply properties of similar polygons.

Primary Learning Objective(s):

The students will apply their knowledge of using proportions on similar polygons to find the height of tall objects that are difficult to physically measure.

Additional Learning Objective(s):

The students will demonstrate their ability to use a digital camera to record information. The students will show the results of their findings to the class.

Approximate Duration of the Lesson: 91 to 120 Minutes
Materials and Equipment:

*large presentation paper
*measuring tapes (in inches and feet)

Technology Resources Needed:

*digital cameras
*linking device for projection
*LCD projector (preferred) OR


Students must be familiar with similar polygons. Students must know how to set up a proportion.

1.)DAY ONE is to be used to decide which objects will be measured. DAY TWO is to be used to finalize projects and present findings. A third day can be used if necessary.

2.)Students will be placed in pre-arranged groups.

3.)To remind students how to set up proportions, go to website Help with Proportions.

4.)Students are to use a digital camera to capture the pictures of taller items whose heights will be calculated. (e.g. flagpole, building, tree, telephone pole, etc.)

5.)One student in each group will stand next to the tall object. One student will take pictures. One student will measure the shadow lengths of the object and the person. Another student can record the measurements. As a group, the students need to decide what form of measurement should be used (inches, feet, centimeters, etc.) Several pictures should be taken.

6.)Once students have recorded information for 5 tall objects, they will return to the classroom to create a presentation.

7.)Students will determine the best way to present their information. They may do a PowerPoint presentation or use the pictures together with a drawn poster of their findings.

8.)Students must set up proportions relating the one student's height and his shadow's length to the object's height and its shadow's length. Students must decide how tall each object is, and the answers must be clearly stated for each object.

9.)Students should include other ways they can use this activity to calculate the missing length of similar polygons.

10.)The presentation can be graded using the attached rubric.

11.)As a wrap-up, discuss how this project can be used outside the classroom. Where do they anticipate using this knowledge again? Is it feasible to use in other subjects?

Attachments:**Some files will display in a new window. Others will prompt you to download. scoring guidelines proportions.rtf
Assessment Strategies:

A rubric is attached and can be modified by user, if necessary. The rubric includes points for a maximum of 30 points.


For those who wish to earn extra points for their group, they can find more than the required five tall objects outside of the school grounds. Students are encouraged to be creative. Students may even choose to use smaller objects, such as a cat or doll and determine its height before actually measuring it.


Students can practice with proportions beforehand or afterwards on website Help with Proportions


Each area below is a direct link to general teaching strategies/classroom accommodations for students with identified learning and/or behavior problems such as: reading or math performance below grade level; test or classroom assignments/quizzes at a failing level; failure to complete assignments independently; difficulty with short-term memory, abstract concepts, staying on task, or following directions; poor peer interaction or temper tantrums, and other learning or behavior problems.

Presentation of Material Environment
Time Demands Materials
Attention Using Groups and Peers
Assisting the Reluctant Starter Dealing with Inappropriate Behavior

Be sure to check the student's IEP for specific accommodations.
Variations Submitted by ALEX Users:
Alabama Virtual Library
Alabama Virtual Library

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The University of Alabama at Birmingham
The University of Alabama at Birmingham
The Malone Family Foundation
The Malone Family Foundation
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