Grade Levels: K-3

These classroom activities are designed to complement the Science Tools topic on BrainPOP Jr.

Tools in School

Together, brainstorm different measuring tools, such as rulers, tape measures, scales, measuring cups and spoons, beakers, binoculars, hand lenses, and microscopes. Have children think about each tool and explain what kind of information it collects and what units it uses. Then distribute different tools to small groups or partners and have them sort. They may sort tools by those that measure in metric or customary units or by those that measure length or weight. Encourage students to be creative! Have each group or pair describe how they sorted the tools.

Up Close and Personal

Remind students that we use hand lenses to look at objects up close and see details we can’t otherwise see with our naked eyes. Have pairs use a hand lens and select an object to observe. It may be an item from the classroom or something from outside. They may want to observe part of a rug or inspect a slice of fruit or analyze a leaf. Have students select objects and draw pictures of what they see. What did they notice with a hand lens that they couldn’t see before? Have them discuss what they observed with the whole class.

Measure for Measure

Using rulers, have pairs measure the length of something in the classroom, such as a desk, rug, crayon, or the chalkboard. Have them measure in inches and then have them measure in feet. Which unit was easier to use? Try the activity again using millimeters, centimeters, or meters. Why might measuring the chalkboard in millimeters be more difficult than measuring it in meters? Then name different objects and have students explain the most appropriate unit to use to measure its length, width, or height. For example, you might name the Empire State Building and guide students to suggest measuring the height in meters or in feet.