CCSS: 6.G.A.2, 7.G.B.4, 7.G.B.6, MP1, MP4, MP6

TEKS: 6.8C, 6.8D, 7.9A, 7.9D

Building the Great Pyramid

YOUR MISSION:  As you read, use volume to learn about the construction of the Great Pyramid of Giza. It’s the largest ever built! Pyramids are tombs for important people in ancient Egypt—including pharaohs, the rulers. The Great Pyramid at Giza was built for a pharaoh named Khufu (KOO-foo), who ruled Egypt from 2575 to 2465 B.C. Round your answers to the nearest tenth. Use the online answer sheet to record your answers. 

Jim McMahon/Mapman® (map); (all Images)

A. The Step Pyramid is the earliest known pyramid. Its bottom step is a rectangular prism 109 meters wide, 121 m long, and 10 m high. What is the volume of the first step of the Step Pyramid?

B. The Step Pyramid has a total of 6 steps. Each step is 10 m high and roughly 10 m shorter in both length and width than the one below it. What is the approximate total volume of the Step Pyramid?

Sneferu’s Bent Pyramid is 104.7 m high. It has a square base with a side length that’s 189.4 m. What is its volume? (Ignore the bend in the faces for this question!)

A. The size of the blocks used varied depending on their location. Blocks on the lower levels were 1.5 m long, 2.5 m wide, and 1.5 m tall. What is the volume of each lower-level block?

B. Blocks used on higher levels were 1 m long, 1 m wide, and 0.5 m tall. What is the volume of each block in the higher levels?

C. What is the difference in volume between lower-level blocks and higher-level blocks?

When it was finally completed, Khufu’s pyramid—later known as the Great Pyramid of Giza—was 146.6 m high. It had a square base that measured 230.3 m on each side. What is the Great Pyramid’s volume?

The pyramid for Khufu’s son Khafre base’s side lengths are 215.3 m, and its original height was 143.5 m. What is its volume?

The third pyramid was for Khufu’s grandson. Its base’s side lengths are 108.5 m, and its height was 61 m. Find its volume.

Order the three main pyramids at Giza from largest to smallest in volume.

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