Weights and measures are a fun way to get children interested in mathematics! There are all sorts of fun things that you can weigh and measure around your home. Here are some of our favorites!
Playful Ways to Learn Weights and Measures
Today I am sharing five of our favorite ways to explore weights and measures through play. This post does include affiliate links; purchases made via these links may earn me a small commission at no cost to you. Thank you!
Measure and weigh yourself
I find that kids love learning activities that involve themselves! Use a measuring tape to find out how tall your kids are, and designate a doorpost or somewhere else in the house where you can track how much they grow over time. Have them weigh themselves and then pick a household object to weigh as well (if it’s under five pounds you will need a kitchen scale for this part). How many of this item would you need to equal their weight?
Get a balance
Having a balance available for the kids to play with will teach kids a LOT about weights and measures! We adore this Learning Resources bear balance set – I actually bought it for the kids because my younger siblings had one when I was growing up and they loved it. This math balance is another favorite from my childhood, and older children will appreciate a precision balance.
Measure around the house
Drawing connections to the student’s personal life is always a great way to engage learners! Hand your kids a measuring tape and send them off to find out the length, width, and height of various household objects. Send them on a scavenger hunt for something that is ten inches long, something that is at least two feet tall, and something that is wider than it is tall.
Shop for groceries
Shopping for groceries is a great way to explore weight with children! Weigh the week’s apples and then compare it to the weight of a loaf of bread, a box of cereal, a bag of potato chips, a gallon of milk. What item on your shopping list weighs the most? Which one weighs the least? Why might some light items on your list cost more than some of the heavier items on your list?
Baking is a very delicious way to explore weights and measures! Kids adore measuring out flour and sugar, and mine are always very enthusiastic consumers of the end result. If you bake a cake or other large dessert, you can add fractions to the serving portion of this exercise.
Measure with toys
How many teddy bears tall is your child? How about wooden blocks? Picture books? Their favorite board book? Let them measure you as well!
You can also use educational toys for this exercise. How many orange Cuisenaire rods long is their leg? How about yellow Cuisenaire rods? If one wooden block is made up of three purple Cuisenaire rods and a cardboard box is 5 wooden blocks long, how many purple Cuisenaire rods long is the box?
What are your favorite ways to explore weights and measures with your kids? Please share in the comments below, or on my Facebook page. You can also tag me on Instagram. Still looking for ideas? Try reading this post on raising kids who love math.