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Saturday, March 17, 2012

Exploring the Metre/Meter (whichever way you like to spell it)!

In Maths this week (oh, I should explain that we call it Maths because it's short for Mathematics) we are working on distance and capacity.  Because my fabulous kids can memorize and apply they are able to convert from mm to m to km no problem.  But when it came to making estimations or conceptualizing the distance of a metre they were very confused. So what better way to clear up the mystery than art and candy.  
The first activity we did was our Metre Art project. The first step was to measure out a metre of yarn with our tape measures (which I got from IKEA and are PERFECT!) Next the kids used their imagination to create a picture, using their yarn, on an A5 piece of card stock. The only rules were that the picture had to fit on the paper and they could not cut the metre.  Here is what they created:

Lisa hard at work.

Jan wanted to write out his name.

Lope made a heart with googley eyes.

Lisa made a cute snail.

Michela ended up designing an umbrella.

This was Maleeha's letter A.

And Aadi's car with googley eye wheels.
The second activity was a huge hit.  To get the kids to work on making estimates I gave each child a plate with two different pieces of coiled or bunched up candy string.  I asked them to estimate each string without touching it. We talked about strategies such as looking at one part and multiplying by how many rows were visible.  I asked them to write their estimate in mm and cm.  Once they made their predictions they could then unroll the string and measure it.  Before they could eat the candy they had to do some addition and subtraction. I wanted to know how accurate their estimates had been and by how many mm and cm they had been wrong.  
This activity really worked great and they enjoyed it very much.  In fact, I was given a point up on the board. Don't kids give me brownie points when they like a lesson. So silly!!

Here are the pictures of this activity!

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