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How high can ladders safely reach? Safety experts recommend placing a ladder one foot away from a building for every four feet of height. This ratio keeps everyone from homeowners to fire-fighters safe, but it also limits how high they can reach.

Students use the Pythagorean Theorem to determine the maximum height ladders can safely reach and discuss the implications for fire safety and building construction.

Students will

  • Use Pythagorean Theorem to solve real-world problems
  • Model real-world scenarios geometrically

Before you begin

Students will need to be fluent in ratio language.

Common Core Standards

Content Standards
Mathematical Practices