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Common Core Standards: Math See All Teacher Resources

High School: Geometry

Similarity, Right Triangles, and Trigonometry HSG-SRT.D.11

11. Understand and apply the Law of Sines and the Law of Cosines to find unknown measurements in right and non-right triangles (e.g., surveying problems, resultant forces).

Students have already proven and used the Laws of Sines and Cosines, but now they're expected to extend their use of the laws and apply them to applications or word problems.

How will students master this standard? The same way they get to Carnegie Hall: practice, practice, practice.

It is in fact through solving many, many application problems using the Laws of Sines and Cosines that students will build their understanding of and confidence in applying these laws to solve problems. And as they become more confident and better understand what they're doing, they will be more prepared to demonstrate mastery of the standard. Sort of a feedback loop of mathematical brilliance, if you will.

Practice, practice, practice will also expose students to the many kinds of problems that can be solved through use of these laws, which will enable them to see the many uses that the laws have in different disciplines: not only math, but also engineering, surveying, orienteering, architecture, and so on.