Montessori Measuring Works from our Homeschool Preschool

Nora has been on a measuring kick this month, and we’ve been having so much fun exploring measuring works that I just had to share what we’ve been up to!

The first thing to mention is that we did not begin with actual measuring. We’ve been building up Nora’s measurement vocabulary for years through other materials like the pink tower, the red rods, and so much more! Those materials help the child to compare sizes and learn terms like “bigger,” “smaller,” “longer,” “shorter,” etc.

One of the first “official” measuring works we did was using foam cubes. This is called a “non-standard unit of measurement” because we’re not measuring in inches or centimeters — just using the cubes to measure. You can use anything as a non-standard unit of measurement — your hand, legos, etc — as long as each object that you’re using is the same size. Nora selected several items from around the classroom, then lined up cubes alongside them to see how many cubes long each object was. Then she wrote it all down.

The next time we did this activity, we incorporated estimating. I made a quick chart so Nora could record the object, how many cubes long she estimated it would be, and how many cubes long it actually was. Her estimates were pretty accurate for most of them!

Nora begged for more measuring work, but I was out of ideas! So I did a quick search and found a printable Length, Height, and Width Measurement Activities pack by Montessori Kiwi. Nora is loving it! So far we’ve only done the first two activities — the first has some command cards to compare the lengths, heights, and widths of various objects around the room…

… and the second has command cards to compare the lengths and heights of objects to the lengths and heights of certain combinations of unifex cubes. That pack then goes on to explore standard units of measurement (like inches and centimeters). We’ll work on those next, but first I wanted to use a few of the materials I already had printed from use with Lila:

This bird measuring work by Little Spark Company was an instant hit! The lengths and heights of various birds are measured to whole centimeters, so it was a great introduction to using a ruler.

My next step will be getting out these free measurement clip cards by Free and Unfettered to practice measuring lines to the quarter inch.

Then we’ll go back to the Montessori Kiwi pack activities!

We’ve also been exploring the measurement of volume through this pouring activity. I chose this liquid measuring cup because it has three different units of measurement on it. I made some quick cards with different amounts to match those units, then showed Nora how to find the line that matches that amount and then pour in water just up to that line.

So much fun!