Homemade Balances

by Early Math Counts

Sometimes manipulatives are fun to make and use with children.  There are several great ways to make balances as you explore this concept with children.

Once kids have been exposed to the Balance Scale as a tool to explore weight, you can see if they want to make their own balances out of simple materials like paper plates and hangers.

Paper plate balancesChildren can make holes on the edges of the plates with a hole-punch and then put the string through the holes.  They will need help tying them on and making sure the lengths are even.  Once they have two plates complete, they are tied to a hanger and the children can use them to move around the room balancing and weighing to their heart’s desire.

Paper plates can be flimsy, so choose sturdy ones so there is less frustration.  This can also be done with paper cups so items can be put inside and the children don’t have to worry about them sliding off.



Give it a try.


One Reply to “Homemade Balances”

  1. I just tried this with my son and his cousin they both enjoyed it while i was in the room. When I left out and return to the room the boys had removed the paper cups and tied the string with two pencils when I asked them why they removed the paper cups they said” the pencils move faster. I laughed and walked away and the boys kept swinging the pencils.

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