This unit teaches students concepts of rhyme, measurement, graphing, and comparison through exploration of classic nursery rhymes.
- Demonstrate ability to use standard units of measurement
- Measure weight, height, and circumference
- Compare and contrast measurements
- Graph measurement results
- 12-inch rulers, enough for a third of the class
- Measuring tapes, enough for a third of the class
- Chart paper
- How Does Your Humpty Dumpty Measure Up? Worksheet printable
- Inch by Inch by Leo Lionni
- Whiteboard or dry-erase board and markers
- Pencils and erasers
- Optional: Large sheets of graph paper
- Arrange for parent volunteers to come into the classroom for Day 1. This activity needs three adults to run smoothly.
- Set up three rotating centers. One area should house the scale, one area the rulers, and one area the measuring tapes.
- Using the chart paper or large graph paper, create three (empty) measurement graphs with the following titles:
- How Much Does Your Humpty Dumpty Weigh?
- How Tall Is Your Humpty Dumpty?
- What Is Your Humpty Dumpty's Circumference?
- Use a sheet of chart paper to create a word web with the word "measurement" in the middle.
- Make a class set of the How Does Your Humpty Dumpty Measure Up? Worksheet printable.
Note: I teach this lesson on the day that students present their Humpty Dumptys. I invite parents into the classroom to watch the presentations, and then have some of them help with the three centers. You can always benefit from parental assistance!
Step 1: Demonstrate how each measurement instrument is used and what it measures. I model use of the measurement devices by using myself as the object.
Step 2: Brainstorm different objects around the room that could be measured. Use the measurement word web to write down students' responses.
Note: When you are integrating a word web into a lesson, draw a picture next to the word if possible. This will help students remember what they said, develop their vocabulary, and assist them when journaling.
Step 3: Tell students that they will be using the instruments to measure their Humpty Dumptys. Distribute the How Does Your Humpty Dumpty Measure Up? Worksheet printable and explain what students will be recording and where they will write their answers.
Step 4: Divide the class into three groups.
Note: When doing a rotation activity like this, I try to have an even number of English-language learners and English-only students in each group.
Step 5: Send each group to a measuring center. Instruct students to use the tool to measure their Humpty Dumptys and record their answers on the corresponding line on the provided.
Step 6: Have the groups switch centers after about ten minutes.
Step 7: Have students sit in a circle and share their favorite ways to measure.
Day 2 and Beyond
Step 1: Read the book Inch by Inch by Leo Lionni aloud to the class. Discuss the way measurement was used in this book.
Step 2: Review the three types of measurement tools used in the last lesson.
Step 3: Starting on Day 2 and continuing each following day, choose two students to compare and contrast the measurements they record on their How Does Your Humpty Dumpty Measure Up? Worksheets.
Step 4: Write on the whiteboard or dry-erase board both of the students' answers to how much Humpty Dumpty weighs, how tall Humpty Dumpty is, and the circumference of Humpty Dumpty.
Step 5: Ask the class (or just the two students) the following questions:
- Which Humpty Dumpty is heavier? Which Humpty Dumpty is lighter? How do you know?
- Which Humpty Dumpty is taller? Which Humpty Dumpty is longer? Which Humpty Dumpty is shorter? How can you tell?
- Which Humpty Dumpty is bigger around the middle? Which Humpty Dumpty is larger around the middle? Which Humpty Dumpty is smaller around the middle? What makes you think that?
Note: Asking multiple questions using new words that mean the same thing will develop students' vocabulary.
Step 6: Tally students' responses and graph their answers on the three measurement graphs: How Much Does Your Humpty Dumpty Weigh?, How Tall Is Your Humpty Dumpty?, and What Is Your Humpty Dumpty's Circumference?
Step 7: Repeat steps 3–6 each day until all students have compared their Humpty Dumpty measurements and added to the graphs.
Step 8: When all students' Humpty Dumptys have been discussed, review each of the measurement graphs. Repeat the questions above with the whole class.
Supporting All Learners
Think about how you are going to make the information comprehensible to your students who don't speak fluent English. For instance, use of pictorial representation on the graph is a must.
Non-Standard Unit of Measurement
Have students explore non-standard units of measurement by using their forearms to measure the length of their Humpty Dumptys. Then have students use their feet to measure the length of a desk, their hands to measure their pencils, etc.
Give students items to measure at home as part of their weekly homework assignment.
- Measure their Humpty Dumptys
- Participate in creating class graphs with Humpty Dumpty measurements
- Were students on task?
- Was there enough time for the lesson?
- Did students feel successful?
- Can students use the measurement tools?
- Did students get the right answers when using the measurement tools?
- Can students tell you which Humpty Dumpty was the heaviest, lightest, tallest, shortest, and longest?
Optional Quiz Template
Give students the same items to measure and assess if they are able to get the same answers.