Trigonometry Pile Up Handout

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  • Trigonometry Pile Up Handout
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This is a challenging trigonometry puzzle for your classroom! I provide this to my students and challenge them to start with whatever information they have in the bottom triangle and work their way upward. This will involve finding missing side lengths in order to finally calculate the hypotenuse at the very top triangle.

The puzzle is designed to be solved using trigonometry alone, but students may also apply Pythagoras' Theorem at some points.

Keep in mind::

  • This puzzle teaches that students shouldn't round numbers part-way through their calculation. (I've found it useful to have one group of students round their numbers as they go and another group withhold from rounding so that results can be compared. This will reveal that rounding leads to serious error.
  • I've also used this to lead into other lessons such as determining the area of the whole compound shape, etc.

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