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What are the types of quadrilaterals?

Quadrilaterals are polygons. They are part of a plane enclosed by four sides (quad means four and lateral means side). All quadrilaterals have exactly four sides and four angles. They can be sorted into specific groups based on lengths of their sides or measures of their angles.

Quadrilateral shapes include square, rectangle, trapezoid, rhombus, parallelogram, and kite (also called a tangential quadrilateral). As long as the four sides connect with straight lines, it is a quadrilateral. It doesn’t have to form an identifiable shape.

What they have in common is that in every quadrilateral the sum of the measures of all interior angles is equal to $ 360^{\circ}$.

Their vertices are marked with capital letters and sides with small letters.

Angles in vertices $ A, B, C$ and $ D$ are usually marked in order with: $\alpha, \beta, \gamma, \delta$ (alpha, beta, gamma, delta).

Remember that in triangles, the sum of  the measures of all exterior angles is equal to $ 360^{\circ}$ (remember, exterior angle is a supplementary angle to a certain interior angle).


This will also be true for quadrilaterals. The sum of all measures of exterior angles in quadrilaterals is always equal to $ 360^{\circ}$.

Diagonals are lines that connect opposite angles.

The division of quadrilaterals according to perpendicularity diagonals and parallel sides:

quadrilateral shapes

Scalene quadrilateral

First group of quadrilaterals is a scalene quadrilateral. Scalene quadrilateral is a quadrilateral that doesn’t have any special properties. The sides and angles have different lengths and measures.

Scalene quadrilateral


Quadrilaterals which have one pair of parallel sides are called trapezoids. Sides that are parallel are called bases of a trapezoid, and ones that are not parallel are called legs. Trapezoid quadrilateral

Isosceles trapezoid

Trapezoids whose legs are of equal length are called isosceles trapezoids.

Isosceles trapezoid

Diagonals of a isosceles trapezoids are congruent.Quadrilateral isosceles trapezoid

Height or altitude of a trapezoid is the length of a line that is perpendicular to a base and runs through opposite vertex. Altitude of a trapezoid will be equal no matter from which vertex we draw it. If we are drawing an altitude from larger base, we simply extend the shorter base.

quadrilaterals 2023


If $\alpha$ is an angle in vertex $A$, $\beta$ in vertex $B$, $\gamma$ in vertex $C$ and $\delta$ in vertex $D$ in a trapeziod $ABCD$, then is valid:

$\alpha + \delta = 180^{\circ}$
$\beta + \gamma = 180^{\circ}$.

In other words, the angles on the same side of a leg of a trapezoid are supplementary.


quadrilaterals 2023


Expand the segment $\overline{AD}$ over the vertices $A$ and $D$. On the line $AD$ denote point $E$.  Since the line $AD$ is a transverse of the parallel lines $AB$ and $CD$,  then $\angle{CDE} =\alpha$ is valid . The angles $\angle{CDE}$ and $\delta$ are supplementary angles, which means that  $\angle{CDE} +\delta = 180^{\circ} \Rightarrow \alpha+ \delta =  180^{\circ}$.

Analogously, we obtained  $\beta+ \gamma =  180^{\circ}$.



A parallelogram is a quadrilateral whose opposite sides are congruent and parallel.

Altitude or height of a parallelogram, in the label $h$, is the line segment that connects a vertex with opposite side, and is perpendicular to that side.

What is a parallelogram

In addition to parallelograms being quadrilaterals, there are certain shapes which are parallelograms as well as quadrilaterals. These are square, rectangle, and rhombus.


Let $ABCD$ be a parallelogram. The opposite angles in a quadrilateral $ABCD$ are congruent, and the adjacent angles  are supplementary.


parallelogram quadrilateral

By definition,  if  $ABCD$  is a trapezoid with legs $\overline{AD}$ and $\overline{BC}$, then:

$$\beta + \gamma = 180^{\circ}  \quad and  \quad \alpha + \delta = 180^{\circ}.$$

If  $ABCD$  is a trapezoid with legs $\overline{AB}$ and $\overline{CD}$, then:

$$\alpha + \beta = 180^{\circ}  \quad and  \quad \beta + \delta = 180^{\circ}.$$

It follows $\beta = \delta$ and $\alpha = \gamma$.



The following statements are equivalent to each other:

1) A quadrilateral $ABCD$ is a parallelogram

2) There exists two opposite sides of a quadrilateral $ABCD$ which are congruent and parallel

3) Each two opposites sides of a quadrilateral $ABCD$ are congruent

4) Diagonals of a quadrilateral $ABCD$ bisect each other

5) Both pairs of opposite angles of a quadrilateral $ABCD$ are congruent

Each of the above statements can be an alternative definition of a parallelogram. The remaining statements we need to prove.


$1) \Rightarrow 2)$

Let $ABCD$ be a parallelogram. Then $\overline{AB} \| \overline{CD}$ and $\overline{AD} \| \overline{BC}$.


parallelogram example


Since line $AC$ is a traverse of parallel lines $AB$ and $CD$ ,then $\angle{ACD} =\angle{CAB}$. A line $AC$ is also a traverse of parallel lines $BC$ and $AD$ that’s $\angle{ACB}=\angle{DAC}$.

$\overline{AC}$ is also the common side of triangles $ABC$ and $CDA$. By A-S-A theorem of congruence of triangles, triangles $ABC$ and $CDA$ are congruent. It follows that $|AB| = |CD]$ and $|AD| = |BC|$.

$2) \Rightarrow 3)$

In quadrilateral  $ABCD$ let be $AB \| CD$ and $|AB| = |CD|$.

Since $AC$ is a traverse of the parallel lines $AB$ and $CD$, that is $\angle{ACD} =\angle{CAB}$. The side $\overline{AC}$ is common side of triangles $ABC$ and $CDB$. By S-A-S theorem of congruence of triangles, triangles $ABC$ and $CDB$ are congruent. It follows that $|BC| = |CD|.$



$3) \Rightarrow 4)$

In quadrilateral $ABCD$ let be $|AB|=|CD|$ and $|BC| = |CD|$, and let the point $S$ be the intersection of diagonals $\overline{AC}$ and $\overline{BD}$.

quadrilateral example


First, consider triangles $ABC$ and $CDB$. By S-S-S theorem of congruence of triangles, triangles $ABC$ and $CDB$ are congruent. It follows that $\angle{ACB} = \angle {CAD}$.

Angles $ASD$ and $BSC$ are vertical angles. If now consider triangles $ASD$ and $BSD$, it follows that $\angle{ADS} = \angle{CBS}$. Since $|BC|= |AD|$ that triangles $ASD$ and $BSC$ are congruent by A-S-A theorem of congruence triangles. It follows that $|AS| = |SC|$ and $|BS| = |SD|$ which means that point $S$ is the midpoint of $\overline{AC}$ and $\overline{BD}$.

$4) \Rightarrow 5)$

In quadrilateral $ABCD$ let the point $S$ be the midpoint of diagonals $\overline{AC}$ and $\overline{AD}$: $|AS|=|CS|$ and $|BS|=|DS|$.

quadrilateral shape

Consider triangles $BCS$ and $ADS$. By S-A-S theorem they are  congruent ($|CS| = |AS|$ – $\angle{BSC}=\angle{ASB}$ (vertical angles) – $|BS|=|DS|$). It follows that $\angle{BCS}=\angle{DAS}$ and $\angle{CBS}=\angle{ADS}$.

Triangles $ABS$ and $CDS$ are also congruent by S-A-S theorem ($|AS|=|CS|$ – $\angle{ASB}=\angle{CSD}$ (vertical angles)  – $|BS|=|DS|$). It follows that $\angle{BAS}=\angle{DCS}$ and $\angle{ABS}=\angle{CDS}$.

It follows:

$$\angle{DAB} = \angle{DAS} + \angle{BAS}= \angle{BCS} + \angle{DCS} = \angle{BCD}$$


$$\angle{ABC} = \angle{ABS} + \angle{CBS}= \angle{CDS} + \angle{ADS} = \angle{ADC}$$.

$5) \Rightarrow 1)$

In quadrilateral $ABCD$ let be $\alpha=\gamma$ and $\beta = \delta$. That means that $\alpha+\beta = 180^{\circ}$ and $\gamma+\delta = 180^{\circ}$.

quadrilaterals 2023

Assume that lines $AB$ and $AC$ are not parallel and let the point of intersection of these two lines be the point $E$ which is on the same side of line $BC$ and points to $A$ and $D$. Then angles $\gamma$ and $\delta$ are interior angles of triangle $CDE$, but the sum of measures of angles $\gamma$ and $\delta$ is equal to $180^{\circ}$, which is a contradiction.

If point $E$ is on the opposite side of line $BC$ and points to $A$ and $D$, then $\alpha + \beta = 180^{\circ}$, which is also a contradiction.

It follows that $AB \| AC$.

Similarly we prove that $BC \| AD$.


rhombus is a parallelogram which has at least one pair of adjacent sides of equal length.

rhombus parallelogram

Opposite angles are of equal measure: $\alpha = \gamma$, $\beta = \delta$ and that adjacent angles are supplementary.

Diagonals in rhombus are congruent and perpendicular.


what is a rhombus

Tangential quadrilateral

A kite is a quadrilateral which characterizes two pairs of  sides of equal lengths that are adjacent to each other. Diagonals of a kite are perpendicular and at least one diagonal is a line of symmetry. A kite is also a tangential quadrilateral.

Tangential quadrilateral


A rectangle is a parallelogram which at least one interior angle is right.

rectangle parallelogram

Diagonals in rectangles are congruent.


quadrilateral rectangle



Square is a rectangle whose all sides are equal.

is a square a rectangle

Diagonals in a square are congruent and perpendicular.


Perimeters and areas of quadrilaterals

Perimeter of any geometric shape is the length of is outline.

Area of any geometric shape is the surface it occupies. Unit of measure for area is $ m^2$ (square meter).

$1$ square meter is equal to the surface enclosed by a square with sides $1 m$.

one square meter

There are also some derived units of measure for areas, for smaller or larger shapes.

$ 1 km^2 = 1 km  \cdot 1 km = 1000 m \cdot 1000 m = 1 000 000 m^2$

$ 1 m^2 = 1 m \cdot  1m$

$ 1 dm^2 = \frac{1}{10} m^2 \cdot \frac{1}{10} m^2 = \frac{1}{100} m^2$

$ 1 cm^2 = \frac{1}{100} m^2 \cdot \frac{1}{100} m^2 = \frac{1}{10 000} m^2$

$ 1 mm^2 = \frac{1}{1000} m^2 \cdot  \frac{1}{1000} m^2 = \frac{1}{1 000 000} m^2$


Area of quadrilateral

The area of a square is equal to a square of length of its side.

Area of a square

Next, there is area of a rectangular. The area of a rectangle is equal to the product of lengths of adjacent sides.

Area of a rectangular

Area of a rhombus is equal to the product of length of its side and altitude.

This is true because, from the picture: If we translate altitude $\overline{BE}$ into point $A$, and extend side $ED$ over vertex $D$, we will get triangle $E’DA$ which is congruent with triangle $ECB$. If we ‘translate’ triangle $ECB$ onto triangle $E’DA$ we will get a rectangular with one side $a$ and other $h$.

Area of a rhombus

The same that goes for a rhombus works on a parallelogram, the area of a parallelogram is a product of its one side and altitude on that side.

Area of a trapezoid is equal to one half of a product of sum of its bases and altitude.

Area of a trapezoid

This formula is a result of dividing a trapezoid into a two triangles $ AED$ and $ BCF$, and a rectangle $ EFCD$.

Now, we can write our area as the sum of smaller areas: $ A_{(ABCD)} = A_{(AED)} + A_{(FBC)} + A_{(EFCD)}$.

We know that $ A_{(EFCD)} =h \cdot c$.
Now we need to find $ A_{(AED)}$ and $ A_{(FBC)}$. If we translate side $b$ next to $ AED$ we get a triangle $ AHD$.

altitude of a trapezoid

The altitude of a triangle $ AHD$ is equal to the altitude of a trapezoid $ ABCD$.

And the side on which this altitude is set is equal to $ a – c$. This leads to a conclusion that:

$\ A_ {(AHD)} = h \cdot \frac{a – c}{2}$.

This means that:

$$A_ {(ABCD)} = A_ {(AHD)} + A_ {(HBCD)} =$$

$$=\frac{h \cdot (a – c)}{2} + c\cdot h= \frac{a \cdot h – h\cdot c + 2h \cdot c}{2} = \frac{h \cdot a + h \cdot c}{2} =$$

$$=\frac{h \cdot (a + c)}{2}$$.


What is a quadrilateral?

A quadrilateral is a polygon that has four sides.

What shapes are quadrilaterals?

These shapes are quadrilaterals: square, rectangle, trapezoid, rhombus.

How do you identify a quadrilateral?

A quadrilateral is a flat shape with four sides that connect. Quad means four. Lateral means side. The lines must all connect. It’s also a flat shape, 2-dimensional. Some quadrilaterals form identifiable shapes, others do not.

What are the 7 quadrilaterals?

There are seven quadrilaterals. They are: Square, Rectangle, Rhombus, Trapezoid, Isosceles Trapezoid, Parallelogram, Tangential Quadrilateral (also known as Kite for it’s kite shape).

What are 4 types of quadrilaterals?

Quadrilaterals can be classified into four types. They are Parallelogram, Rhombus, Square, and Rectangle. Furthermore, Rhombuses, Squares, Rectangles are all Parallelograms.

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