Measurement: It Takes Ten

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In this math lesson, learners practice estimation and measurement skills as they move from station to station calculating length, volume, weight, and area. At each station, learners first estimate, measure, and then compute the difference between their estimation and the actual measurement. They estimate and measure marbles to the nearest gram and squeeze water-saturated sponges to practice measuring in millimeters. Learners practice linear measurement estimation skills by throwing cotton balls and rolling toy cars. Learners determine if they are a square or a rectangle by measuring and comparing arm span and height. Finally, each learner determines the area of his/her foot by counting and computing the area by constructing a rectangle to approximate the area.

Quick Guide

Preparation Time:
30 to 45 minutes

Learning Time:
1 to 2 hours

Estimated Materials Cost:
1 cent - $1 per group of students

Age Range:
Ages 8 - 11

Resource Types:
Activity, Lesson/Lesson Plan


Materials List (per group of students)


  • Life Sciences
    • Human Body
  • Mathematics
    • Data Analysis and Probability
      • Data Analysis
      • Data Collection
      • Data Representation
    • Measurement
      • Units of Measurement
      • Size and Scale
  • Physical Sciences
    • Structure and Properties of Matter
      • Mass and Weight
      • Volume and Density

Informal Categories

  • Toys


To use this activity, learners need to:

  • see
  • read
  • be mobile
  • touch

Learning styles supported:

  • Involves teamwork and communication skills
  • Involves hands-on or lab activities


This resource is part of:

Access Rights:

  • Free access



  • All rights reserved, PBS, 2012

Funding Source:

  • US Department of Education