## Do You Measure Up?

6-8
1

Students learn the basics of the metric system. They identify which units of measurement are used to measure specific objects, and they learn to convert between units within the same system.

Provide students with index cards and markers. Have them brainstorm different measures used in the metric system and record them on index cards.

In pairs, have the students organize the index cards into categories of weight, length, and volume. Ask the students to rank each unit within the category according to size (smallest to largest).

A sample chart appears below.

 Length Mass Volume millimeter milligram milliliter centimeter gram liter meter kilogram kilometer

Next, have the students generate a list of items measured with each unit. Place each item on a separate index card and distribute the cards among the class.

A sample list is shown below.

 Length Mass Volume millimeterinsect lengths milligrammedicines millilitermedicine dosage centimeterlength of paper gramfood litermilk meterlength of a hallway kilogrammass of humans kilometerdistance between cities

After the students are familiar with the different sizes of the metric units, show them a conversion table. Facilitate a conversion with students on how to convert by multiplying and dividing by powers of ten.

Distribute the Metric Conversions Activity Sheet to the students to work on individually or in pairs.

Assessment Options

1. At this stage of the unit, students should be able to do the following:
• Identify the appropriate unit of measure for familiar objects and distances
• Make conversions between units of measure in metric units
2. Tell students to create a series of problems, using the metric system, that they can exchange with each other. Include with each problem an open-ended response question that measures the students' understanding of the metric measure and its application.
Extensions
Move on to the next lesson, Discovering Gallon Man.

Questions for Students

1. What kind of metric units are used to measure fruit at the grocery store?

[Mass of fruit: grams.]

2. What is the smallest unit of the metric system that you might use to measure length? What is the largest?

[Millimeter; Kilometer.]

3. How is volume measured in the metric system? Where have you seen this unit on everyday products?

[Liter is the base unit; bottles of water.]

4. Where are some common places you have seen the metric system used instead of customary units?

[Student responses may vary.]

Teacher Reflection

• Did the students demonstrate an understanding of metric measures? What additional experiences do they need before moving on to the next lesson?
• Did students apply metric measures correctly? In what areas did they demonstrate confusion about appropriate units for specific tasks?
• What additional experiences do the students need in converting units between customary and metric measures? What additional activities can reinforce this lesson?

### Measurement Terms

6-8
This lesson introduces relationships between measurement and geometry. The activities build on students' prior knowledge as students work with partners and as a whole class to identify and classify terms to develop their understanding of measurement.

### The Golden Ratio

6-8
Students learn about ratios, including the “Golden Ratio”, a ratio of length to width that can be found in art, architecture, and nature. Students examine different ratios to determine whether the Golden Ratio can be found in the human body.

6-8
Students learn to write and solve proportions by gathering data and calculating unit rates.

### Discovering Gallon Man

6-8
Students experiment with units of liquid measure used in the customary system of measurement. They practice making volume conversions in the customary system.

6-8
Students extend their knowledge of proportions to solving problems dealing with similarity. They measure the heights and shadows of familiar objects and use indirect measurement to find the heights of things that are much bigger in size, such as a flagpole, a school building, or a tree.

### Off the Scale

6-8
Students use real-world examples to solve problems involving scale as they examine maps of their home states and calculate distances between cities.

### Learning Objectives

Students will:

• Identify the appropriate unit of measure for familiar objects and distances.
• Make conversions between units of measure in metric units.

### NCTM Standards and Expectations

• Understand both metric and customary systems of measurement.
• Understand relationships among units and convert from one unit to another within the same system.