Show the class a whiteboard marker and ask the students how to measure its volume. Discuss some of the possible options and consider the advantages and disadvantages of each.
Watch the Mr. V Teaching Math – Introduction to Volumevideo on YouTube. Highlight the two methods for measuring volume and discuss which option has been used throughout the unit. Guide the class to the idea of using cubes.
Choose a range of objects from around the classroom that the students can use cubes to measure their volume. Keep the objects small and as regularly shaped as possible.
Model how to measure the volume of one of the objects by making a similar-sized ‘cube version.’ Introduce each object to be measured and provide an opportunity for the students to ask questions and seek clarification.
Working in small groups, allow the students to measure the volume of each classroom object by making a same-sized model using cubes. Encourage the students to record their results in their workbooks. Rotate the objects around the groups until each group has measured them all.
Once the students have finished, review the activities and invite the students to share their measurements. Discuss any discrepancies and try to formulate reasons why the measurements might vary.
Revise the concept and definition of volume, checking for and correcting any misconceptions.
Encourage more capable students to measure the volume of more complex/oddly-shaped objects.
Provide less confident students with simple 3D shapes to measure e.g. cubes, rectangular prisms.
Suggested Assessment Strategies
used strategic whole class or individual questioning
observed student participation during learning activities