Lesson plan

Measure the Classroom

Let’s make math real! Engage students in learning about measurement by measuring objects around the classroom and creating word problems for peers to solve.
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Students will solve real-world word problems about measurement.

(5 minutes)
  • Tell students that you have a problem: The pencils in the classroom are getting shorter and shorter!
  • Take out a short pencil. Now take out a brand new pencil. Say, “Look how much shorter this old pencil is than the new pencil!”
  • Have students guess how much shorter the little pencil is than the big pencil. Record answers on the board.
(10 minutes)
  • Say, “Let’s see how much longer the bigger pencil is than the shorter pencil.” Take out a ruler and model how to measure the bigger pencil, explaining how you put the end of the pencil at the beginning of the ruler. Measure the pencils and write their lengths on the board.
  • Say, “To figure out how much longer the bigger pencil is than the shorter pencil, we need to subtract.” Show students how to subtract to find the difference between the pencils.
(10 minutes)
  • Tell students to go get two objects in the classroom. Have them work in pairs to measure the lengths of both objects and figure out the difference.
  • The pairs of students should write a number sentence to demonstrate the subtraction they did to figure out the difference in the lengths of their objects.
  • If pairs finish ahead of time, challenge them to repeat this activity with two new objects.
(15 minutes)
  • Tell students that they are now going to practice solving real-world problems where they compare the lengths of objects. Hand out the Classroom Problems and Pencil Problems worksheets. Have students complete the worksheets independently.
  • Enrichment: Have students write their own measurement word problems.

  • Support: Write a number sentence frame to help students solve for the differences of objects: (longer object) - (shorter object) = (difference)
(5 minutes)

Assess students’ understanding by having them share their answers to the worksheet problems.

(5 minutes)

Call on students to share a real-world word problem about objects in the classroom. Work together as a class to solve the problem.

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