How can I work out the area of a shape?

Fin and Snoot calculate the area of their garden to cover it with shiny bogmany bluegrass.

What is area?

Area means how much space a flat shape takes up.

Area is measured in square units:

  • Square centimetres (cm²) are good for measuring a small area - like the picture or a model.
  • Square metres (m²) are good for measuring bigger areas - like a wall or a playground.

How do you work out the area of a shape?

You can work out the area of a shape by dividing it into squares and then counting all the squares. This can get a bit slow for big shapes.

Is there a quicker way?

For squares and rectangles it can be quicker to measure the length, measure the breadth and then multiply them. So if a rectangle is 2 cm long and 3 cm wide, the area is:

2 cm x 3 cm = 6 cm²

There's more to learn...

This guide
Fin and Snoot - Primary level - Maths - Bitesize

How can I work out the area of a shape?