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Rod Area

Age 7 to 11

For this task, imagine using a number of rods, each with a length of 1 unit.
You will use the rods to create a letter U shape which is symmetrical.

Example 1:

 

               

   28 rods                      U shape                 Area of 39 square units


Example 2:

                     

   34 rods                        U shape                      Area of 57 square units


The following are not allowed as they are not U-shaped:


 

 

Challenge 1

 

Using 20 rods each time, find one U shape which has an area that is an even number of square units and one which has an area that is an odd number of square units.

 

 

Challenge 2

 
Using any whole number of rods find a U shape with an area of 14 square units.
Can you find all the U shapes with an area of 14 square units?
How do you know you've got them all?


Here is a printable sheet of the activity.