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Volume of and Prisms Lesson Plan


My Eighth Grade class is about to start a unit on Volume and Surface Area. To start
off this unit, I will be going over the volume of Cylinders and Prisms. We will start
off by seeing if the students understand what volume means and where Prisms and
Cylinders are found in the real world. Prisms and Cylinders are unique to the other
shapes we will be discussing volume about. They have two faces that are identical.
This means that the base’s area can move vertically (height) throughout the shape.
Thus, the formula of V=Area of the base times the height was derived. The students
will get a visual model to show how the base can move throughout the shape and
come up with the formula themselves. We will do examples together and then the
students will be released to do partner work to explore the content we discussed.
The discussion, my notes, and the “Post-Assessment” at the end will be used as a
formative assessment to gauge understanding of material. The top three items on
the agenda for the launch is the routine of my Classroom Mentor for the beginning of


During the lesson, I plan on acting as a facilitator between the students in order to
have the focus be on the different strategies and reasoning amongst the students. I
will be listening to the different strategies that are being said and try to clarify
misconceptions. Having the students restate another students strategy will help the
students be able to have a deeper understanding of the topic and have “kid friendly”
language be used within the classroom. Proving the volume formula for Cylinders
and Prisms will help students conceptualize how to figure out the volume without
the need of a formula sheet in front of them. Physically seeing a cylinder and prism’s
bases move throughout the shape will allow them to fully understand how to derive
their volumes. I will give sufficient amount of time for the students to explore the
content on their own. We will share strategies at the end via a discussion, but I will
also be floating around throughout the work period in order to listen into the
partner talk.

Tasks: Students will use the properties of Cylinders and Prisms in order to calculate
their volumes. Students will also be able to use volume to find a Cylinder or Prism’s
missing measurements.

Discourse: Students will work in partners to reach an answer and then discuss their
solution with the their partners and neighbors. I will act as facilitator as they solve
the problem while sharing different strategies and questions to their partners. I
want to provide the space for my students to do most of the talking and flush out
their ideas with other students. There will be a discussion at the end in order to
share out strategies amongst the students.

Tools: Students will use the volume formulas of Cylinders and Prisms

Norms: Students will remain at a productive partner voice in order to not disturb
other pairs and engage in discussion in reflection over their work. Students will be
reminded to explain their answers as the normal expectation in math class.


Students should have a variety of strategies and tools to use in order to approach
any mathematical problem they encounter. This could be an equation, a word
problem, or a real life situation. Hearing other students strategies will help the
students view how to solve problems differently. I will provide the students with a
certain way I would solve the problems, but they will have the freedom of exploring
different ways in which they find it easiest or most useful to solve. Letting the
students fend for themselves will give the students a greater sense of ownership in
their work and confidence when it comes to solving similar future problems. The
goal is for the students to notice that one doesn’t need to memorize a formula in
order to solve for the volume of Cylinders and Prisms. The emphasis should be on
using what one knows about the properties of Cylinders and Prisms in order to
calculate their volumes.. Having the opportunity to work in pairs will give the
students a chance to share their ideas with one another and use each other as a
“discussion board” to discuss the work. The students taking ownership over their
own work, by exploring these problems, will lead to a deeper learning experience
than memorizing an equation that will easily be forgotten after the unit is over.
Different strategies will arise from the group discussion afterwards and will let kids
view the questions in a different light (hopefully). This will hopefully get the
students to become more reflective of their work and get a true deep learning
experience through the power of reflection.


Students will develop an understanding of what makes up the volume of Cylinders
and Prisms. Students will be able to use properties of Prisms and Cylinders in order
to calculate their volumes.

PA Core Standards:

CC 7.G.B.6 Know the formulas for the volumes of cones, cylinders, and spheres and use them to
solve real-world and mathematical problems.

G. Identify and/or use properties of quadrilaterals.

G. Identify and/or use the properties of a sphere or cylinder.

Materials and Preparation:

Smart Board
Can of Soup
Shoe Box

Classroom Arrangement and Management Issues:

Students will work within groups of 2 during the activity portion of the assignment.
I will be floating around the partner groups to ensure students will be held on task
at all times. During the lecture and review portion of the class, students have the
expectations to be quiet and only talk when in a productive way. When students get
too talkative and loud, I will stop talking and wait for their eyes to look at me and we
will continue. This is typically not an issue in the class; the students are almost
always well behaved. I do not anticipate any issues during the class.

Plan (Class is 90 Minutes plus a 30 Minute Study Hall):

• Copy down homework
• Two PSSA Prep questions will be on the board and the answers logged
into their clickers
• Review Homework from the Night Before (The difficult problems)
• Ask students what they believe volume is and how/why is it used
• Ask students what cylinders and prisms are and properties they can
• Show a can of soup and shoe box and show how volume works
• Ask students what the area of the bases are and figure out how we can
derive a formula for volume
• Give examples to solve for volume of cylinders and prisms
• Give examples if lengths are missing and volume is given
• Have students a example or two to do with their neighbor.
• Assign partner work for students to dig in deeper.

• Students will be working in pairs doing word problems from the text and be
able to use each other as a “discussion board” in order to problem solve
• Occasionally I will announce good strategies I hear or ask questions that will
make them think deeper about the situation.
• Answers will be compared with partners and surrounding neighbors in class
• I will be floating around between the pairs in order to hear how they are
solving the problem and to answer any questions needed (I will be looking at
different strategies used and asking students to explain their reasoning).

While walking around, I will share out strategies used by some pairs to help
move along students who seem to be struggling

Wrap Up:
• Students will then come back together as a whole group and share out their
answers and strategies used to solve.
• Time will be given for questions about strategies or discoveries made during
the activity
• I will have students explain other students’ reasoning in hopes to get them to
think about solving problems with different strategies.
• There will be a “Post-Assessment” after the activity with one question to be
answered on the clicker about the volume of Cylinders and Prisms.
• This “Post-Assessment” will help me understand whether or not the students
understood the lesson and what skill or strategy I may need to reinforce for
next class.

Anticipating Students’ Responses and Your Possible Responses:

Some responses by my students might be in regard to the area of the bases (Circles,
Triangles, and Rectangles). I will try to probe them ask why they believe the height
of the Prisms or Cylinders is related to finding the volume. Students may have a
harder time deciphering word problems, especially with missing lengths. I will do an
example for the class as extra practice to help students see how to solve for missing
lengths. Students may also forget to use the radius for the base of a rectangle and
use the diameter instead.

Assessment of the Goals/Objectives Listed Above:

Throughout the explore time, I will be going around to each group and seeing how
each student is solving the problems, as well as listening in on the discussion
between the two partners. While floating around the room, I will be making notes of
strategies used in order to see where misconceptions may be happening. The
discussion during the launch and after the exploration will be used to assess
students’ reasoning behind their work. I will be putting an emphasis on students
articulating how they solved the problems given. The “Post-Assessment” will also
be used as hard data to help determine fluency of the topic covered. The “PostAssessment” will inform my instruction for the next day and determine the type of
challenge problems/homework problems I review the following day.


If a student gets done early, I will allow students to be able to start on their
homework for the next night. If a student finds the work too challenging, I will sit
down with the group in order to provide further assistance. I do not anticipate any

student having the topic go over their head based upon previous experience I have
had with them doing area of 2D figures and finding missing lengths of 2D figures.