Grade Levels: 6-8

*Click to open and customize your own copy of the Surface Area Lesson Plan.

This lesson accompanies the BrainPOP topic Surface Area, and supports the standard of solving real-life and mathematical problems involving area and surface area. Students demonstrate understanding through a variety of projects.


Display images of a rectangle and rectangular prism, like these:






Ask students: 

  • What is a 2-dimensional shape? How does it compare to a 3-dimensional shape?
  • Do you notice any 2-dimensional shapes within the 3-dimensional object? Explain.
  • Recall the area formulas. How do you find the area of a rectangle?


  • Read aloud the description on the Surface Area topic page.
  • Play the Movie, pausing to check for understanding.
  • Assign Related Reading. Have students read one of the following articles: “In Practice” or “In Depth”. Partner them with someone who read a different article to share what they learned with each other

Step 3: APPLY and ASSESS 

Assign Surface Area Quiz, prompting students to apply essential literacy skills while demonstrating what they learned about this topic.


Students express what they learned about surface area while practicing essential literacy skills with one or more of the following activities. Differentiate by assigning ones that meet individual student needs.

  • Make-a-Movie: Imagine you work at a gift wrap store. Create a mini-tutorial explaining how to wrap presents of different shapes.
  • Make-a-Map: Make a concept map comparing and contrasting surface area and volume.
  • Creative Coding: Code a math problem that uses surface area.

More to Explore

Area Builder: Build shapes to explore the area and perimeter of irregular figures.

Geometry and Measurement Unit: Continue to build understanding around measurement by exploring more BrainPOP topics. 

Teacher Support Resources: