Measurement Fun!!

I have been teaching second grade FOR-EV-ER….really…almost twenty years so I have basically tried everything when it comes to every skill a second grader needs to know πŸ™‚  The other day we began our unit on Measurement in math…I love teaching measurement and the kiddos love it too…they get to move around and really interact with each other…well that’s the way I teach measurement anyway πŸ™‚

I always begin my unit with a mentor-text titled Measuring Penny by Loreen Leedy.
This is one of my ALL TIME FAVORITE BOOKS!!!  It is is a wonderful book to use as a springboard for a discussion on measurement.  After we have our initial discussion, we make a T-Chart on Standard and Non-Standard units of measurement and we talk about the units that Lisa (the main character in the book) uses to measure.

After our discussion, I explain to my little kiddos that they are going to do some measuring using Non-Standard units of measurement just like Lisa…they always try to guess what they are going to use…but they never guess it πŸ™‚

Then I whip out my “Penny Ruler”…I get lots of “yays” and “cools” and they really get excited to get moving on measurement!  I have been doing this activity for as long as I can remember, but I just updated it to be a bit more interactive for my kiddos.

This is how it works…First, the students put together their Penny Ruler which consists of little dogs (Penny :)…which is their non-standard unit of measurement they will use for the activity.  Then I explain the mini-book and the concepts of wide=width, long=length, and tall=height.  This tends to be a bit confusing for them, but they get the hang of it as they work through the activity.  The students work together in pairs as they make their way around the room measuring classroom objects using their Non-Standard Penny Ruler!  They absolutely love it and are completely engrossed and on-task the entire’s incredible how well they work when they are allowed to move around.  Below are some pics that I took of my little ones completing the activity….

Measuring the file cabinet with their Penny Ruler.

Measuring the window with their Penny Ruler

Measuring their leg with their Penny Ruler

Measuring the carpet with their Penny Ruler

Measuring the bookshelf with their Penny Ruler

Measuring the table with their Penny Ruler

Measuring their desk with their Penny Ruler

Working together to measure the rug.
Here is the mini-book they used to record their Non-Standard classroom measurements!

It really was such a fun day!!   My little kiddos had a blast and really enjoyed the activity.  I also sent home a homework assignment for the students to continue using non-standard measurement with objects in their home using their Penny Ruler….they were actually excited to do homework πŸ™‚  It was a great day!

If you are interested in this unit, check it out on my TPT Store…

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  • Corinna
    February 9, 2013 at 5:20 pm

    What a fun way to measure Anna! I will have to check out that book:)

    Surfin' Through Second

  • Casey Canion
    February 9, 2013 at 7:15 pm

    This unit looks like sooooo much fun! Love your blog by the way!

    [email protected]

  • Emily
    February 9, 2013 at 7:49 pm

    I have a dog named Penny, my kiddos would love it!

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  • Jackie
    February 9, 2013 at 9:09 pm

    Just doing measurement now. This look like loads of fun. My granddaughter's name is Penny. Might be a little hard to measure with a 10 month old!
    [email protected]

  • - Alyssha
    February 10, 2013 at 8:53 pm


    Your new blog looks SOOOOOO incredible!!!

    Teaching and Tapas: 2nd Grade in Spain

  • elaine baker
    February 11, 2013 at 2:11 am

    I love this book!!! A favorite in my classroom!! Great ideas, thanks for sharing!!


  • alawson
    February 11, 2013 at 2:45 am

    Your measuring penny unit looks great!!

    [email protected]

  • Carol-Ann
    February 11, 2013 at 11:55 pm

    Hi! I guess I amone comment too late ut had to tell you that I use this book and use it in my class. This would make a great addition to my measurent unit. Also, my class and I love your snowmen unit too. Thanks.

  • Carol-Ann
    February 11, 2013 at 11:58 pm

    I love this book too! Thanks for creating such a great unit. My class and I also love your snowmen unit too. Thanks again!

  • karen
    February 12, 2013 at 1:42 am

    Looks like your kids had fun! I always liked teaching measurement. …And P.S. your blog looks super cute-ified!
    Mrs. Jones’s Kindergarten

  • karen
    February 12, 2013 at 1:44 am

    Oh, and one more thing I forgot– How in the heck have you been teaching 20 years?? Did you start teaching when you were like 10? haha πŸ™‚
    Mrs. Jones’s Kindergarten

  • Special Teacher for Special Kids
    February 12, 2013 at 2:08 am

    These activities are so cute! Bummed I missed out on getting the unit. I will be sure to respond faster next time.

    [email protected]
    :o) V.
    Special Teacher for Special Kids

  • Lesa Moore
    February 17, 2013 at 10:28 pm

    I love that book. The unit looks good. Thanks