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Science Connections
Chapter 1 Section 4













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1 class period

[1-4] Tools of Measurement

The purpose of this section is to describe laboratory tools. Students will manipulate these tools to measure the metric length, mass, volume, and temperature of various objects and substances.

The themes that can be focused on in this section are unity and diversity and systems and interactions.

Unity and diversity: Stress that all objects share the properties of length, mass, volume, density, and temperature. Measuring these properties might e relatively simple or rather complex.

Systems and interactions: Lead students to understand that many systems combine to form the world we live in. It is the understanding of these systems and the application of this understanding that drive scientists to help create a better world.

Performance Objectives 1-4

  1. Describe laboratory tools used to measure length, mass, volume, and temperature.
  2. Choose appropriate tools and metric units to measure given substances.

Science Terms 1-4

Meniscus, p.28

Hold up a metric ruler

  • What type of measurement do you think we will use this for?

Hold us a glass of water. Explain that volume is the amount of space an object takes up.

  • How could we measure the volume of water in this glass?

Show students a block of wood.

  • How could we find the volume of this piece of wood? (V = lwh; measured in cm3.)

Using a graduated cylinder, some water, and a stone, have students calculate the volume of the stone.

  • Do you think this method would work for any irregular object? (Not all of them, objects that are less dense than water would float and would not displace an amount of water equal to their own volumes.)

  • Each side of a regular solid is 5 centimeters long. What is the volume of the solid?
  • What instruments would you use to measure length? Mass? Volume? Temperature?