Here are some links to support students of all ages by giving visual references to help make abstract measurements more concrete.
The Learn.Genetics site created by The University of Utah has created a Cell Size and scale visual that allows visitors to view the size of cells from a coffee been down to a carbon atom. Use the slide bar to zoom down from 12 ml (millimeters) all the way down to 340 pm (picometer = a trillionth of a meter).
Let students compare themselves to other animals by measuring their ear, height, and foot length and see where they line up in size to other animals with similar dimensions. The Lawrence Hall of Science has created the Measure Yourself and other measuring activities such as “Jump Start” which has students jump as far as they can then measure the distance they covered to compare it to their friends and other living organisms like a grasshopper or rabbit.
From the BBC’s Math files, Animal Weigh In, has students balance a scale with weights that equal the same amount as the animals sitting on the scale. Student will practice adding and converting weights in pounds, ounces, grams, kilograms, stones, and tons.
eThemes, your source for online resources that are content focused and are safe for students, has 4 “themes” on measurement that might include additional links to help your students learn about this topic. Check out Math: Metric Measurement, Math: Customary or Standard Measurement, Math: Telling Time, or Science: Temperature. If you are an eMINTS teacher and still can’t seem to find the exact resources you are looking for resources, you can always request a new eTheme and get what you are looking for and save yourself the time searching Google.
Brooke Higgins is an instructional specialist with the eMINTS National Center. You can read more at her blog Higgins Helpful Hints Blog. Diane McCormack, a PD4ETS Graduate and Instructional Technology Facilitator with the Affton Public Schools, shared some of these and other great resources.