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Spring SAVY 2013 Week 5: Measurement Rules – Section 2 (Instructor: Erin Pfaff)

Posted by on Tuesday, March 12, 2013 in SAVY blog.

Spring SAVY 2013 Week 5: Measurement Rules – Section 2 (Instructor: Erin Pfaff)

Greetings from the world of measurement! Today we finished up our investigation of linear measure by using our 2-unit footstrip rulers from last session to measure the length of a table. Not only did the students figure out that a measure of 4 rulers really meant 8 footsteps, but they also used the partial unit markings on their rulers to measure the short additional length (about another 1/4-2/4 of a footstep).

We began investigating area measure today through a task that required finding which of three paper rectangles was the biggest. Initially, most students voted for the long skinny rectangle as the largest, but what about the shorter, wider ones? They were bigger in a different direction. Armed with only the paper rectangles, students quickly deduced that folding would be the only way to find out for sure which rectangle was the biggest. By finding common rectangle units, students were able to compare one to the other, concluding that all three actually had the same area!

We continued our area investigation by comparing the space our hands took up. “Area toolkits” filled with beans, buttons of various shapes and sizes, and dry spaghetti noodles, helped us measure the space our hands took up to compare them to our partners’. Which tool was the best?  The students favored the beans, as they were all the same shape and size.

Next week we will finish up with our hand comparisons and discuss conventional units of area. We have a special surprise planned for Open House, so we hope you all can make it!

Erin and Megan