Back To Course

Math for Kids23 chapters | 325 lessons

{{courseNav.course.topics.length}} chapters | {{courseNav.course.mDynamicIntFields.lessonCount}} lessons | {{course.flashcardSetCount}} flashcard set{{course.flashcardSetCoun > 1 ? 's' : ''}}

Instructor:
*Bethany Calderwood*

Bethany has taught special education in grades PK-5 and has a master's degree in special education.

This lesson explains surface area. You will learn how to use length and width to calculate the areas of the surfaces of an object and add them all together to find the total surface area.

Lucas has a pile of empty cereal boxes. He wants to cover them with red paper and make them into building blocks. How much paper does Lucas need to cover one box?

To find out how much paper is needed, Lucas has to find the surface area of the cereal box. **Surface area** is a measurement of all the space that the surface of a three dimensional shape (a shape with height, width and depth) takes up. In other words, surface area is the total of all the areas of each of the sides of an object.

How many sides are on one cereal box? There is a top and bottom--those are the same size. Then there is a front and back--those are the same size. And finally there are the two narrow sides--those are the same size. Look at the diagram that shows what the cereal box would look like if it were cut open and flattened out:

To find the surface area of the cereal box, Lucas will have to find the areas of all six sides.

Look again at the diagram. Each side of the cereal box is a rectangle. The formula Lucas needs to find the area of a rectangle is:

- area = length x width

So, let's find the area of each side.

The length of the top is 7 inches, and the width is 2 inches.

7 inches x 2 inches = 14 square inches.

The area of the top is 14 square inches.

The top and bottom are the same, so the area of the bottom is also 14 square inches.

The length of the front is 12 inches, and the width is 7 inches.

12 inches x 7 inches = 84 square inches.

The area of the front is 84 square inches.

The front and back are the same, so the area of the back is also 84 square inches.

The length of one narrow side is 12 inches, and the width is 2 inches.

12 inches x 2 inches = 24 square inches.

The area of one narrow side is 24 square inches.

Both narrow sides are the same, so the area of the other narrow side is also 24 square inches.

So far, we found the area of each side of the cereal box. That gives us six separate numbers. What we want, though, is one number--the surface area, which will tell us how much red paper Lucas needs to cover one whole cereal box. To find that number, we add the areas of all the sides together.

Top = 14 square inches

Bottom = 14 square inches

Front = 84 square inches

Back = 84 square inches

Side = 24 square inches

Side = 24 square inches

- 14 + 14 + 84 + 84 +24 + 24 = 244

The surface area of the cereal box is 244 square inches. Lucas needs 244 square inches of red paper to cover one cereal box.

To measure **surface area**, think about covering a box. Determine how many sides there are, then find the area of each side. Add the areas of all the sides together, and you have your surface area!

To unlock this lesson you must be a Study.com Member.

Create your account

Are you a student or a teacher?

Already a member? Log In

BackWhat teachers are saying about Study.com

Already registered? Log in here for access

Did you know… We have over 200 college courses that prepare you to earn credit by exam that is accepted by over 1,500 colleges and universities. You can test out of the first two years of college and save thousands off your degree. Anyone can earn credit-by-exam regardless of age or education level.

To learn more, visit our Earning Credit Page

Not sure what college you want to attend yet? Study.com has thousands of articles about every imaginable degree, area of study and career path that can help you find the school that's right for you.

You are viewing lesson
Lesson
1 in chapter 2 of the course:

Back To Course

Math for Kids23 chapters | 325 lessons

{{courseNav.course.topics.length}} chapters | {{courseNav.course.mDynamicIntFields.lessonCount}} lessons | {{course.flashcardSetCount}} flashcard set{{course.flashcardSetCoun > 1 ? 's' : ''}}

- Surface Area Lesson for Kids
- Types of Triangles: Lesson for Kids
- Geometric Shapes: Lesson for Kids
- Isosceles Triangle Lesson for Kids
- How to Use a Protractor: Lesson for Kids
- 3-D Shapes: Lesson for Kids
- Pentagon Shapes: Lesson for Kids
- Polygon Shapes: Lesson for Kids
- Diamond Shapes: Lesson for Kids 2:42
- Measuring Angles: Lesson for Kids
- Circle Definition: Lesson for Kids 3:10
- Circumference Lesson for Kids: Definition & Formula
- Cubes: Lesson for Kids
- Properties of a Circle: Lesson for Kids
- Rectangle Definition: Lesson for Kids
- Triangle Lesson for Kids: Definition & Facts 3:06
- 2-D Shapes: Lesson for Kids
- How to Find the Area of a Triangle: Lesson for Kids
- How to Find the Volume of a Cylinder: Lesson for Kids
- Pentagon Shape Facts: Lesson for Kids 2:39
- Vertices: Lesson for Kids
- What is a Regular Polygon? - Lesson for Kids
- Pythagorean Theorem Proof: Lesson for Kids
- Pythagorean Theorem Lesson for Kids: Definition & Examples
- How to Find the Perimeter of a Regular Pentagon 2:43
- Is a Pentagon a Regular Polygon?
- Geometry Definition: Lesson for Kids
- Names of Polygons
- What is a Venn Diagram? - Lesson for Kids 3:32
- Triangle Sum Theorem Proof
- Facts About Right Angles
- Octagon Lesson for Kids: Definition & Facts
- Hexagon Lesson for Kids: Definition & Facts
- Perimeter Lesson for Kids: Definition & Examples
- 4-Sided Polygons 3:55
- Dodecahedron: Definition & Facts
- Special Right Triangles: 3-4-5 Triangle
- Triangle Sum Theorem: Definition & Examples
- Dodecahedron: Patterns & Properties
- Finding the Area of an Irregular Hexagon 3:38
- How to Divide an Angle into Two Equal Angles
- What is a Congruent Angle? - Lesson for Kids
- Go to Geometry for Elementary School

- Series 66 Exam: Study Guide & Practice
- Series 63 Exam: Study Guide & Practice
- Computer Science 330: Critical Infrastructure Security
- Real Estate Information Guide
- Alabama Real Estate Broker Pre-License Exam: Study Guide & Practice
- AP English: Literary Devices
- AP English: Sentence Basics
- Exploring Bivariate Data
- Introduction to Business Strategy: Help and Review
- Individual Integrity & Ethics
- California Real Estate Exam Dates
- How to Study for the FSA Exam
- FSA Test Cost
- How to Pass the FSA Reading Test
- What is the FSA Writing Test?
- FSA Test Score Information
- MTLE Day Preparation

- Christianity: Origin & Teachings
- Project Management Plan: Definition, Purpose & Examples
- Creating a Stimulating Classroom Environment: Definition & Strategies
- Precipitation: Types & Formation
- Michigan Right to Farm Act: Definition & Overview
- Genesis 27 Discussion Questions
- World War I Activities for High School
- Obedience Story Comprehension Questions & Worksheet
- Quiz & Worksheet - Characteristics of Fluorine
- Quiz & Worksheet - Dividing By 11
- Quiz & Worksheet - The Amazon's Ecosystem
- Flashcards - Real Estate Marketing Basics
- Flashcards - Promotional Marketing in Real Estate
- Teaching Strategies | Instructional Strategies & Resources
- 2nd Grade Math Worksheets & Printables

- Beginning Spanish for Teachers: Professional Development
- Supervision Principles for Teachers: Professional Development
- GED Reasoning Through Language Arts
- Public Speaking Study Guide
- Holt Lifetime Health: Online Textbook Help
- Preparing Job Applications
- Principles of Evolution: Biology 101 Lesson Plans
- Quiz & Worksheet - Geographic Influences on Russian & Central Asian Migration
- Quiz & Worksheet - How Resources Drive Movement in Australia & the Pacific Islands
- Quiz & Worksheet - Consumer Adoption Process
- Quiz & Worksheet - Cell Differentiation
- Quiz & Worksheet - Early Human Communities

- The Global Economy: Advantages, Expansion & Impact
- Traditional Games in Poland
- Advanced Regents Diploma Requirements
- Math Riddles for Kids
- 4th Grade Science Projects
- Nervous System Experiments for Kids
- New York State Physical Education Standards
- ELM Test Dates
- What is Saxon Math?
- Ohio Alternative Teacher Certification
- Common Core State Standards in Maryland
- Behavior Rubric Examples

- Tech and Engineering - Videos
- Tech and Engineering - Quizzes
- Tech and Engineering - Questions & Answers

Browse by subject