Visualizing the Maximum Area of a 3-Sided Rectangular Enclosure


Increasing Spatial Reasoning Skills: Optimization of Measurement

Visualizing Optimization - Maximizing the Area of a 3-Sided Rectangular Enclosure

Although maximizing the area of a 4-sided rectangular enclosure is usually considered quite basic for most students, understanding why maximizing a 3-sided rectangular enclosure does not yield a square can be more difficult.

To help address this student learning need, here is the animation created for maximizing the area of a 3-sided rectangular enclosure by using a situation where we must rope in a swimming area at the beach:

Stage By Stage PDF File

Here is a stage-by-stage PDF file for you to grab, if you’d like:

Please let me know if you and your students found this resource helpful!

If you’re interested in creating animations for your own math class, download Keynote here:


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