Calculus AB/BC - Approximating Areas with Riemann Sums

There are several ways to estimate the area if the curve does not create nice geometric figures. The presenter introduces the idea of using areas of rectangles to estimate the area under the curve. Pupils use four types of Riemann Sums, left, right, midpoint, and trapezoid to approximate the area under the curve. Learners then determine whether the calculated Riemann Sum is an over- or underestimate.

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Instructional Ideas
  • Consider splitting the lesson across two days
  • Connect the formula for finding the area of a trapezoid to the formula used in the example
Classroom Considerations
  • Second installment in a 16-part unit on Integration
  • Provides note pages for individuals to use during the video
  • Contains additional practice to use to work toward mastery
  • None