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Area of Shapes

Area of shapes is defined as the amount of space inside two-dimensional shapes or plane figures.


area of a squarearea of a shapeIn the following two figures, their respective area are shown shaded inside the shapes. We can determine the area of a figure by dividing it into small squares of side length of 1 unit, and then counting the total number of squares inside the figure. If each small square has side length of 1 unit, then its area is 1 unit2, read as ‘1 square unit’.

area of rectangle=20 sq units

The rectangle shown here is divided into 20 small squares, so its area is 20 square units, i.e. 20 unit2. If the unit of measurement is a centimetre, then the area is given in square centimetres, or cm2.


Generally, millimetre is used to measure small shapes like stamps, etc. Centimetres are used to measure things like books, table mats, hand towels, etc. Metre is used to measure larger shapes like rooms, yards, football fields, etc. Hectares are used to measure things like towns and farms. Finally kilometres are used to measure huge areas like states and countries.

Now let us look at a few other shapes and identify their areas –

area of shape=14 sq unitsArea of shape = 14 sq units



area of shape=8 sq unitsArea of shape = 8 sq units



In the shapes below, we count the total number of ‘full’ squares, and the total number of ‘half’ squares to get the area of the shape.

area of star=8 sq unitsArea of star shape = 4 + (1/2~*~8) = 8 sq units


area of shape=7 sq unitsArea of shape = 5 + (1/2~*~4) = 7 sq units



Let us look at the area of a few specific shapes, including the formulae to calculate their respective areas.

Area of a Square

Area of a Rectangle

Area of a Triangle

Area of a Circle

Area of a Sector

Area of a Parallelogram

Area of a Trapezium (or trapezoid)

Area of a Kite

Area of a Rhombus