Using the Pythagorean theorem, a2 + b2 = c2, we can calculate the lengths of the bases and the height. The bases have lengths of 2 (the hypotenuse of the triangle with legs 2 and 2) and 6 (the hypotenuse of the triangle with legs 6 and 6), respectively. Similarly, the height is 2 (it is the length perpendicular to the bases and the hypotenuse of the triangle with legs 2 and 2). The area is , which equals 16 square units.
We can also find the area by drawing a rectangle around the trapezoid and then subtracting the smaller areas, or by dividing the trapezoid into two triangles, or by any of several other methods. But any way you slice it, the area is 16 square units.
To learn more about the Pythagorean theorem, go to Learning Math: Geometry, Session 6.
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