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Measurement and height

by Early Math Counts

Height is probably one of the first ways we explore measurement with young children.  Words like “shorter” and  “taller” already exist in a young child’s vocabulary.  How “tall” someone is visual and easily seen.  Children are very interested in themselves, so conversations about how “big” or “tall” they are is engaging to them.

When I was growing up my parents measured my sisters and I against the door jamb of the kitchen.  You could see our upward progress with names and dates.  I remember thinking that leaving that evidence of our growth was so sad when we moved out of my childhood home.  My husband and I have done exactly the same thing with our kids.  When I look at it now, I can’t believe that they were ever so small.

You can measure your kids on the wall (covered with a piece of paper) and make marks to show each child’s height.  You might place each child’s picture next to her/his mark so they can see themselves.  This now means that the children can compare the heights of the children in their group.

Here is a link to a lesson plan that involves length measurement using a nonstandard unit of measure.

17 Replies to “Measurement and height”

  1. Our class usually uses yarn to measure height. We tape all of the students yarn against the wall. This is a great visual especially for the young students.

  2. Kids really do enjoy knowing how tall they are and measuring them and letting them compare how tall they are to others children is fun for them. Children love to be told they are getting taller.

  3. I used the free standing mirror in my room to measure height. I turned it around and marked feet and inches on the back. I just have the children back up and we see how tall we are.

  4. An idea for a classroom, is measure the kids in the beginning of the year. Then measure them at the end of the year.

  5. The children enjoy being measured and checking from time to time to see a difference in their and their friends heights!

  6. I like to draw outlines of each child’s body while they lay on the floor. I before I tape them to the wall I let them measure themselves with blocks.

  7. this has actually something i wanted to do with my own daughter. but it will be fun to do it in class too. and we can measure the height of the children 3 to 4 times during the year to see how they grew during the year

  8. Children also like to be reminded of how small they were, and how much they’ve grown, so this is a great activity for including the whole family.

  9. This is a great idea to to do at the beginning of the year, then again at the end of the year to see the height difference.

  10. When my daughters was little we use to measure them in the kitchen entrance , when we move to a new house was hart to left and see that part of their story was in this little wall, forr them was very significative and for me too., children really understand growth through measurement

  11. In addition to using a tape measure or yarn to measure. I have also used large foam lego type blocks to see how many “legos” the children are. They really like this.

  12. This idea is great when teaching measurement for my preschooler. I like how hands-on this activity is as well.

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