In this hands-on lesson, students "discover" the concept of volume. They will learn the concept by using math manipulatives to measure volume.
measuring, volume, measurement, cubic inches, cubic
For this lesson, you might pair up students or they can work individually.
Distribute to each student or student-pair two different-sized boxes. The boxes should be fairly manageable in size, since students are going to fill them with 1-inch cubes.
It might be a good idea to number the boxes and to create a master answer key that has on it each box number and its volume.Have students use the 1-inch cubes to measure volume. Provide each student with a work sheet with the instructions and questions below on it (or post the text below on chart paper or a transparency and have students respond on paper). The work sheet will lead students to "discover" the meaning of volume.
Work Sheet Text
Introduce students to the way of writing volume. For example a box that is 4 inches wide, 6 inches long, and 2 inches high has a volume of...
4 x 6 x 2 = 48 cubic inches or 48 in.3
At the end of the lesson, review the vocabulary volume and cubic inch to be certain students understand them.
Now that students know how to figure the volume of a container without manually placing 1-inch cubes in it, provide much bigger boxes for students to use as they calculate volume. They can use 1-inch cubes or rulers to do that. Observe that they are able to correctly calculate the volume of those boxes.
Informally observe students for understanding throughout the lesson. Collect worksheets for a possible grade. Grade students as they figure volume in the extension activity.
Submitted by Erin Coy, Dacusville Elementary School in Easley, South Carolina
Copyright © 2006 Education World
Originally published 05/04/2006
Last updated 10/15/2007