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Student Sheet 15 (from
Session 1)
D Prepared solids A- K
(fromSession 1)
Riceor sand, trays
Student Sheet 16 (1per
One- centimeter graph
paper (available)
Scissors and tape for
each pair
Centimeter rulers
(1per pair)
Student Sheet 17(1per
student, homework)
1 '1 Student Sheet 18(3per
student, homework)
Identifying the
Different Solids
Sessions 2 and 3
Comparing Volumes of
Related Shapes
What Happens
Students work with 11geometric solids they make frompaper. Each solid
is paired with another that has equal base and/or height measurements-
pyramids are paired with related prisms, and cones with related cylinders.
Using rice or sand, students compare the volumes of the solids in each pair.
Finally, as an assessment, students construct arectangular prism with the
same base and three times the volume of agivenrectangular pyramid.
Student work focuses on:
exploring volume relationships between solids, particularly those with
the same base and height
. . ---- . .
Note: Student pairs should have made all 11solids before starting Sessions
2and 3.If they have not, allowtime for them to finish before starting this
Small groups show each other their solids and spend afewminutes naming
the different types- rectangular and triangular prisms and pyramids, and
cylinders and cones. Being able to identify themwith correct terminology
will be useful for class discussions later in the investigation. Refer tothe
Teacher Note. Geometric Solids.and Their Parts (p.71), for a description
of the different types of solids. Helpstudents findtheir own ways to
remember what characterizes prisms, pyramids, cylinders, and cones.
The names of the solids are printed onthe patterns tohelp students iden-
tifythem. Also, Student Sheet 15includes names with the pictured solids.
Students can use this sheet as areference throughout the investigation.
66 Inuestiqatiori 4: Prisms and Pyramids, Cylinders and Cones
Call attention to the way the solids are grouped onStudent Sheet 15, Pairs
of Solids.
Look carefully at the two solids in each pair. Think about how they are
the same and how they are different. Take the solids you have made
from patterns and pair them the same way.Useyour rice [or sand] to
find how the volume of the larger solid compares to the volume of the
smaller solid in each pair. I'm going to set up achart on the board where
you can record your findings.
Polr Solids
Number of smaller Solid
needed to fli Ilaraer solid
1 A) B
: 2 CID
3 ElF
Worldng inpairs, students use whatever methods they choose to compare
the volumes of the solids. Tocontain the rice or sand as much as possible,
ask students to do their pouring over the trays.
Note: Because there islikely to be some measurement and construction
error inthese activities, students won't all get exactly the same answers.
Helpthem recognize when answers are "closeenough." Alsosuggest that
they round their answers to the nearest whole or half unit.
If their cutting and taping is fairly accurate, students should discover that
the volume of each larger, flat- topped solidis about three times the volume
of the smaller, pointed solid, if it has the same base and height. (Because of
inevitable measurement and construction errors, the 3- to- l relationship
won't be exact.)
Makeyour chart onthe board wide enough for all students to record their
answers. Most students will find a3- to- 1 relationship for appropriate pairs
of solids. Seeing such numbers recorded inthe class chart will encourage
those students who find adifferent relationship toreflect onpossible errors.
Asyou circulate, encourage students to reflect onhow the solids in each
pair compare. Help them notice that the solids inpairs 1- 3 have the same
base and height; the solids in pair 4do not. Similarly, rectangular pyramid
K has the same base and height as rectangular prism I, but only the same
height- not the same base- as rectangular pyramid J .
Solids and
Their Volumes
Sessions 2 and 3: Comparing Volumes of Related Shapes a 67
What We
Pyramid and
Prism Partners
After everyonehas compared thevolumesof thesolidsinall sixpairs,
bring thestudents together toshare their findings.Thechart youmade
shouldremain ontheboard for this discussion.
What didyoudiscover? Howdothe volumes of the solids in each pair
Howare the shapes of the solidsin each pair the same, and howarethey
Thegoal isfor students torecognizethat if aflat- topped solid, such asa
prismor cylinder, has thesameheight andbase as apointed- top solid,
such as apyramid or cone, then thevolumeof theflat- topped solidwill be
three times that of thepointed- top solid.Thisrelationship may bedifficult
for students to explainfullyandprecisely.TheDialogueBox, Exploringthe
3- to- 1Relationship (p.73), illustrates howsomestudents have described
this relationship between thesolids.
Inorder tocommunicate their findingsclearly, students will need to agree
onthemeanings for the terms base andheight and about methods for mea-
suring theheight of cones andpyramids. Theseideas are discussed inthe
Teacher Note, Geometric SolidsandTheir Parts (p.71).TheDialogueBox, .
Exploringthe 3- to- 1Relationship (p.73), showshowoneteacher dealt with
these concepts asthey cameupinthe discussion.
Asyouwrap upthis discussion, ask student pairs tosaveall their solidsfor
use againinSessions 4and 5.
Giveeach student acopyof Student Sheet 16, Pyramid andPrismPartners.
Haveextra sheets of one- centimeter graph paper availablefor students
whomight need them.
Inthe six solidpairs that youworked with earlier, some of the.solidshad
three times the volume of their partner solid.This sheet gives you apat-
tern for another rectangular pyramid. First youneed to cut out, fold, and
tape the pattern to make the pyramid. Then your job is to make a "part-
ner" for this pyramid- a rectangular prismthat has three times the vol-
ume of the pyramid.
68 Investigation 4: Prisms and Pyramids, Cylinders and Cones
Make the pattern for your prism from the grid at the bottom of the
sheet. Youcan check your solution using rice [or sand] or any other
method you choose.
Many students will have discovered the 3- to- 1 relationship between prisms
and pyramids but not yet understand under what conditions the relation-
ship occurs. This task will giveyouthe opportunity to see which students
understand the significance of base and height measurements in this com-
parison. When students have built their rectangular prisms, ask them to
write about how they decided what sizetomake their prisms .
: . Tip for the Linguistically Diverse Classroom Students who are not
writing comfortably in English may draw the steps of their decision- making
process, or meet with youindividually to describe orally what they did.
Somestudents may recognize that if they make aprism with the same base
and height as the pyramid (2by 6by 5em), it will have three times the vol-
ume. They can determine the approximate height (5ern) by setting the
pyramid next to aruler held vertically. If they use the length of an edge for
the height (6em), their prism will have more than three times the volume.
Other students will devise methods to make aprism with adifferent base
which still has triple the volume as the pyramid. For example, they may
start with aprism whose sides are too high, fill it with three volumes of the
pyramid, then cut off the extra length onthe sides. This is also avalid
When students have finished, ask them tobring their prisms for a class dis-
cussion. Students will probably have discovered avariety of prisms that
have three times the volume of the pyramid.
Did anybody try amethod that didn't work? What was it? What methods
worked for making aprism with three times the volume of the pyramid?
After students have discussed their methods, ask them to compare the dif-
ferent prisms they made.
Will the different prisms we built have the same volume or different
It may not be clear to everyone that all prisms with three times the volume
of the pyramid will have equal volume, even if they look different. If
needed, test the different prisms with students by directly comparing their
volumes 'withrice or sand.
Sessions 2 and 3: Comparing Volumes of Related Shapes 69
- -
Sessions2 and 3 Follow-Up
r. 1 Homework
Puzzle Cube Pattern Giveeach student one copy of Student Sheet 17,
Puzzle Cube Pattern, and three copies of Student Sheet 18, Puzzle Pyramid
This is a puzzle to do at home. First you make the solids- one open cube,
and three pyramids. Then you need to figure out how to put the three
pyramids together so that they make a cube that fits into the cube box.
Students will need scissors and tape at home. If necessary, they can make
their solids at school to take home. Encourage students to share this puzzle
with their families.
Note: This puzzle offers agood visual demonstration of the 3- to- 1 volume
relationship between prisms and pyramids with the same height and base.
However, while arectangular prism can always be decomposed into three
pyramids with the same volume, in general these three pyramids will not
be identical. The cube is aspecial case.
70 III Investigation 4: Prisms and Pyramids, Cylinders and Cones
Geometric Solids and Their Parts Teacher Note
A geometric solid is ashape that has three
dimensions- length, width, and height. Inmath-
ematics, unlike everyday conversation, these
geometric shapes are called "solids" whether
they are filledor hollow.There are many types
of geometric solids. Some, including spheres,
cones, and cylinders, have some curved sur-
faces. Others, called polyhedra, have onlyflat
surfaces. Twocommon types of polyhedra are
prisms and pyramids.
Prisms The solids we call prisms have two par-
allel, congruent faces that are connected by rect-
angular regions. Either congruent face can be
called the base. For arectangular prism, the
choice of base is arbitrary but is generally the
face that the prismis resting on.Bases are
shaded inthe diagram.
Todefine prisms intheir own words, students
might say that "prisms have atop and bottom
that are the same shape, and sides that are all
rectangles." Of course, this description is accu-
rate onlywhen the prism is turned so that its
bases are onthe top and bottom.
Pyramids A pyramid consists of one polygonal
face (thebase) and apoint not in the plane of
this polygon.which we will call its "top." The top
isjoined byline segments to each vertex of the
polygon.forming lateral faces that are triangu-
lar regions. Students might describe apyramid
as having "aflat bottom and apointed top. with
sides that are all triangles."
Cylinders Likeprisms, cylinders have two par-
allel and congruent faces (either of which can be
referred to as the base). But instead of polygons
for abase. they have circles.
Cones A cone consists of acircular region (the
base) which isjoined to apoint not in the plane
of the circle.
The Height and Diameter The height of a
pyramid or cone isthe length of aperpendicular
line segment drawn fromthe top to the base.
The height of aprism or cylinder is the distance
frombase tobase. Thediameter of a cone or
cylinder isthe length of asegment that has its
endpoints onthe circular base and passes
through the center of the base.
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Continued on next page
Sessions 2 and 3: Comparing Volumes of Related Shapes - 71
Teacher Note
Somestudents may use the length of an edge or
the sideof apyramid or cone as the height. This
is incorrect, but will not befar off for tall, nar-
row solids.Assuch figures become flatter (see
diagram), the inaccuracy of using the wrong
dimension for the height will increase.
not the hei9ht
Encourage students tojudge theheight of pyra-
mids and cones byholding aruler next to them,
as shown onthe Dimensions of Solids trans-
parency (p.142).
Other Terminology Asstudents talk about
solids, they will use various words to describe
their parts, and even the figures themselves. For
example, intalking about arectangular prism,
they may refer to corners instead of vertices and
sides instead off aces. and may call the figure a
box instead of arectangular prism. Youcan use
these everyday terms yourself, but also introduce
and encourage the use of the standard terms as
they fit into the conversation.
72 Il1 Investigation 4: Prisms and Pyramids, Cylinders and Cones
It isnot necessary for students to use the stan-
dard terms consistently, but they do need to find
words that communicate their meanings clearly.
Exploring the 3-to-l Relationship
This class has been working with the paper
solids shown on Student Sheet 15, Pairs of
Solids.After the students have compared the
volume of the solids in each pair with rice, the
teacher places aset of paper solids on atable.
She has 'written the answers that students have
agreed upon in alarge chart on the board.
Pair Solids
Number of smaller solicl
needed to fill laraer soli:!
1 A\B 3
: 2 C,D 3
3 ElF 3
L f
G,H : 2
6 IlK 3
As you worked with these pairs of solids, what
did you find?
Zach: One of the two in each pair has a point.
Rachel: And the other ones are flat tops.
Amir: The smaller one ends in apoint.
Becky: The bigger ones are bigger cause they go
up[motioning along two vertical parallel lines
with her hands], and the smaller ones come
together [making apoint with her hands].
Antonio: It looks like in pairs 1, 2, 3, and 6, the
bigger one had 3times the rice as the smaller
one. Pairs 4and 5were different.
What was special about the solids that have
the 3- to- 1 relationship?
Kevin: In pair 4, the point [the top of the cone] is
higher. In the others [other pairs] the points are
even; they're the same.
Cara. The heights are the same, except pair 4.
Manuel: They all fit inside each other, so they're
even in height.
Becky: When the heights were the same, the
straight ones were three times bigger.
.- ., Some of you have talked about the heights of
these solids. What does height mean?
[Cara moves to the table and places her hand
horizontally across the tops of both solids in
each of the first three pairs and pair 6.J
Cara: They're the same height here; they're the
same height here; and here, and here.
What do we define as height on these shapes-
from where to where?
Sofia: The base [she holds out ahorizontal hand]
to the top of the object [moves her horizontal
hand upwards].
OK, you said the heights are the same for the
solids that are 3- to- 1. Is that the only thing
that's the same?
Mel- Ling: If you look at the bottoms, if you put
them together [motions 'with her hands], they
are the same shape.
Are you saying that the bottom of the square
prism and square pyramid [points to pair 1]are
exactly the same size?
[The teacher first holds the two solids with their
square bases facing the students; then places
the prism on top of the upside-down pyramid so
their bases fit together.J
Jasmine: Yeah, the bottoms are the same.
What do we call the bottoms of these figures?
Several students: The base.
What about pair 2[showing the bases]? Are the
bases of these the same? I
Students: Yes.
How would we prove that the base has some-
thing to do with the 3- to- 1 relationship?
Desiree: Look, the bases are the same for I and
K, but J is different. And the heights are the
same. Shape I didn't have 3times the rice, asJ .
So is the same height enough?
Leon: No, they have to have the same base.
Sessions 2and 3: Comparing Volumes of Related Shapes - 73
Name Date
Pairs of Solids
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Pearson Education, Inc.
-~-----. . . .
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Pair 1
rectangular .
Pair 2
cylinder C cone D
Pair 3
Pair 4
cylinder G cone H
, . J.. _
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Pair 5
" pyramid J
Pair 6
prism I
pyramid K
Investigation 4Session 1
Containers and Cubes
comparing vOlumes Of Kelatea ! Snapes
1 . Lookat the two solids in eachpair. How are they alike and different?
Pairs How arethey alike? Howare they different?
How many How many
smaller solids smaller solids
will you need did itactually
to fill the take to fill the
larger solid? larger solids?
Make aguess
) ) )
( Pair 1 )
rectangular pyramid B
( Pair J)
Pearson Education, Inc. 134
Investigation 4Resource
Containers and Cubes
.- ,
triangular prism E
( Pair 3)
pyramid F
( Pair 3)
Peerson Education. Inc. 136
sothat its base
has theshape
of this
Investigation 4 Resource
Containers and Cubes
cylinder C
(Pair 2)
Pearson Education, Inc.
cone D
(Pair 2)
Investigation 4Resource
Containers and Cubes
cylinder G
( Pair 4)
pyramid J
( Pair 5)
pyramid K
( Pair 6)
Peorson Education, Inc.
Investigation 4Resource
Containers and Cubes
cone H
( Pair 4)
Pearson Education, lnc.
rectangular prism I
( Pairs 5 and 6)
. .
Investigation 4Resource
Containers and Cubes
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