Introduction to Area


Our Introduction to Area lesson plan teaches students about area and how to measure it. Students practice measuring the area of squares, rectangles, and other shapes.

Included with this lesson are some adjustments or additions that you can make if you’d like, found in the “Options for Lesson” section of the Classroom Procedure page. One of the optional additions to this lesson is to take your students outside to measure items like the sidewalk or playground equipment.

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What our Introduction to Area lesson plan includes

Lesson Objectives and Overview: Introduction to Area equips students to define area, explain the concept of area, and identify the area of a square and rectangle or other given spaces. This lesson provides varying opportunities to measure objects and to visualize the application of concepts. At the end of the lesson, students will be able to define area, explain the concept of area, and identify the area of a square and rectangle or other given spaces. This lesson is for students in 2nd grade, 3rd grade, and 4th grade.

Classroom Procedure

Every lesson plan provides you with a classroom procedure page that outlines a step-by-step guide to follow. You do not have to follow the guide exactly. The guide helps you organize the lesson and details when to hand out worksheets. It also lists information in the blue box that you might find useful. You will find the lesson objectives, state standards, and number of class sessions the lesson should take to complete in this area. In addition, it describes the supplies you will need as well as what and how you need to prepare beforehand. The supplies you will need for this lesson include cardboard or paper, scissors, and the handouts. To prepare for this lesson ahead of time, you can cut 1 foot by 1 foot squares out of the cardboard or paper and copy the handouts.

Options for Lesson

Included with this lesson is an “Options for Lesson” section that lists a number of suggestions for activities to add to the lesson or substitutions for the ones already in the lesson. One of the optional additions to this lesson is to take your students outside to measure items like the sidewalk or playground equipment. One adjustment that you can make to the homework assignment is to have students find the area of various surfaces in their home. If you have older students, you can also have them use rulers to measure and find area in inches.

Teacher Notes

The teacher notes page includes a paragraph with additional guidelines and things to think about as you begin to plan your lesson. This page also includes lines that you can use to add your own notes as you’re preparing for this lesson.


What is Area

The Introduction to Area lesson plan includes two pages of content. The lesson begins by explaining what the word area means. You, as a person, take up space on a surface, such as the Earth or the surface of your classroom. The surface of the Earth is much larger than the surface of your classroom. We call the size of any surface its area. Area is the amount of space inside the boundary of a flat, 2-dimensional object. When we say two dimensions, we mean length and width. The lesson includes a simple diagram to help illustrate the concept. We can measure area in inches, feet, or miles (or many other units!). To find the inside measurement of an object (the area), we use the outside measurement (the length and width). We measure area in squares, such as square inches, square feet, or square miles.

Square Inches, Feet, Yards, and Miles

If you have a figure that has a length of one inch and a width of one inch, the area of that figure is one square inch. We used square inches to measure smaller objects, such as a piece of paper. A square foot has a length and width of 12 inches each. We use square feet to measure areas like floors, rooms, houses, and backyards. A square yard has a length and width of three feet each, and we use them to measure even larger areas, like carpeting. Finally, a square mile has a length and width of a mile (5,280 feet). We use square miles to measure really large areas, like towns, cities, states, and countries.

A normal sheet of paper has an area of 94 square inches, which means we would need 94 one inch squares to cover the whole surface. A room in a house might have an area of about 144 square feet, meaning it would take 144 one foot squares to cover that surface. A football field has an area of about 6,300 square yards, meaning we would need 6,300 one year squares to cover it. Finally, the United States has an area of about 3,500,000 square miles. This means that we would need many, many, many one mild squares to cover the entire thing! All we need to find these areas are two simple measurements.

Finding Area

You find area simply by counting the number of square units of a figure. The lesson includes three figures that all have 12 square units (we can imagine these to be square inches, square feet, square yards, or square miles). All of the figures are different shapes, but they all have the same area. Objects that are not square also have areas, and we can approximate those areas using square units. We can do this for circles, pentagons, triangles, and more.

If you have a square or a rectangle, you can use simple multiplication to find the area. You need two measurements: the length and the width. For a rectangle with a length of 6 and a width of 2, you can find the area by multiplying those two numbers together. The area of that rectangle is 12!

We need to find area for a variety of different reasons. Some of these include carpeting a room, building roads, painting a house, or wrapping a gift. Students may be able to think of even more reasons that they might need to find the area of something. It is also very important to use the right unit.


The Introduction to Area lesson plan includes three worksheets: an activity worksheet, a practice worksheet, and a homework assignment. You can refer to the guide on the classroom procedure page to determine when to hand out each worksheet.


Students will work in groups to complete this activity worksheet. Each group will use 1-foot squares to find the area of the objects or places listed in the chart on the worksheet. The chart lists the object or place, the total square feet, and the length x width. These places include the top of a table or counter, a while board or chalkboard, and the classroom floor. Some of these objects may not have an area that is an exact number. If that happens, students can round the number to the nearest half or whole number. Each group will also choose and measure five additional items.

For the second part of the activity, students will work alone. They will cut out one inch by one inch squares and will use them to find the area of ten small objects in the classroom, using square inches. They will fill out a similar chart to the one used in the first part of the activity.

Students may work in larger groups to complete this activity if you’d prefer.


For the practice worksheet, students will find the area of each figure. There are 12 figures total.


The homework assignment asks students to complete two exercises. The first asks them to identify the best unit of measurement to find the area of each listed object. The objects include the Atlantic Ocean, a cell phone, and the roof of a house. The second exercise asks them to find the area of each figure using multiplication. They will write the answer inside each figure.

Worksheet Answer Keys

This lesson plan includes answer keys for the practice worksheet and the homework assignment. If you choose to administer the lesson pages to your students via PDF, you will need to save a new file that omits these pages. Otherwise, you can simply print out the applicable pages and keep these as reference for yourself when grading assignments.

Additional information


2nd Grade, 3rd Grade, 4th Grade



State Educational Standards

LB.Math.Content.2.G.A.2, LB.Math.Content.3.MD.C.5, LB.Math.Content.3.MD.C.6, LB.Math.Content.3.MD.C.7, LB.Math.Content.3.MD.D.8, LB.Math.Content.4.MD.A.3

Lessons are aligned to meet the education objectives and goals of most states. For more information on your state objectives, contact your local Board of Education or Department of Education in your state.

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Love this!!

This item was amazing!! My students were having a difficult time grasping area and this plan broke it down for them in an easy to learn way.