A trapezoid has a top base of 32 and a bottom base of 22. Its legs are each 13. What is its area?
The area of a trapezoid is the average of its bases times its height. This can be expressed as
We have the two bases, but we don't have the height. Draw the trapezoid on a piece of paper.
Now, write in the measurements. If both legs are
We can use the Pythagorean theorem. If one base is
We can use the Pythagorean theorem to figure out that the other leg of the right triangle, which is also the height of the trapezoid, has length
Then, we plug our height and base lengths back into the area formula to determine that the area of the trapezoid is