How to calculate the Area of a Parallelogram

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This is a simple math tutorial aimed at middle school students, explaining how to calculate the area of a parallelogram.


Background

The previous tutorial described how to calculate the area of a square and a rectangle:

  1. to count the number of square units that fit into the shape
  2. to multiply the width by the height.

Calculating the Area of a Parallelogram

Parallelograms are like squares and rectangles that have been pushed to the side.



To calculate their area we can still use both of the above methods, however the first method is a little difficult with parallelograms because they do not have right angles (angles of 90 degrees) i.e. they cut diagonally across square units.



It can be difficult and tiresome to count all of these part units. Thankfully, it is still possible to use the second method - multiplying the width by the height of the parallelogram. Check out the video above to see why that still works.


Complementary Exercises

If you'd like to practice your parallelogram area calculations, check out this worksheet: