Common core State Standards

  • Math:  Math
  • 5:  Grade 5
  • MD:  Measurement & Data
  • C:  Geometric measurement: understand concepts of volume
  • 4: 
    Measure volumes by counting unit cubes, using cubic cm, cubic in, cubic ft, and improvised units.

Download Common Core State Standards (PDF 1.2 MB)

How Many Peas Fill the Classroom?
Lesson Objective: Students estimate and measure peas and room size to learn about volume
Grades 6-8 / Math / Measurement

Thought starters

  1. Why is it important for students to design a plan before beginning?
  2. What different measuring approaches did students use?
  3. Ms. Slusar shares that accuracy is not a goal of this activity. What could this particular project teach us about accuracy?
What a fantastic volume task! Unwieldy numbers, mathematically precise language, and a classroom community of learners making sense of a problematic mathematical situation. This 6 minutes is packed with ideas, and would be a great grade level conversation starter for discerning what must've come before and determining next steps for this class.
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It's so cool!!!!!!!awesome!!!!!thanks for sharing such good experimental video!!!
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This exercise could be expanded to continue the discussion of accuracy by having groups work on various size containers with the ultimate goal of comparing to the size of the classroom. The containers would need lids to represent the ceiling and it would be interesting to see when sample size does not change significantly. This could be related to statistical sample size used in industry to evaluate a process or quantity.
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Great lesson idea! I'll use this lesson using connecting cubes or dice to allow for even more precision!
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This looks like a fun lesson! I like Mary's idea too, of using dice, to allow for a more precise answer. Otherwise it would be a great conversation, like you said that we've estimated a lot so we could be quite off. I think the planning/brainstorming stage was a good idea so students could gather their thoughts. The students were very engaged and measuring using different tools. I'd be curious to know, did you discuss whole class or did you show any other groups that measured using a different unit? Thanks for the video share!
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  • Summary

    This fun and active math lesson for Key Stage 3 students involves measuring, estimating and calculating, and contains a great


    This fun and active math lesson for Key Stage 3 students involves measuring, estimating and calculating, and contains a great lesson idea for use in lesson planning.
    Math teacher Katie Slusar asks her Year 7 class at Comberton Village College to work out how many chickpeas might fit into their classroom.
    During this exercise in mathematical modeling, the pupils plan how to approach the task and choose the equipment they need.
    They start measuring and calculating, and make appropriate estimates and assumptions as they go, involving large and small numbers and different units of measurement.
    Although the answers her pupils get are unlikely to be accurate, this is a fun and effective lesson idea that tackles some tricky mathematical concepts.



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