Where is zero?
Where is zero on a ruler? Does zero on a ruler mean no length? Where
is zero on a bathroom scale? Does zero mean no weight? Where is zero
on a thermometer? Does zero on a thermometer mean no temperature?
Does zero grams equal zero pounds? How could you test your answer? Does
zero degrees centigrade equal zero degrees Fahrenheit? How could find
out the answer?
Can your students use a "broken" ruler? After your students
have learned to measure length with a ruler, give them some rulers that
are missing the first part of the scale. Can your students still use
the rulers to measure length correctly?
Use a "Catch the Ruler" activity to measure reaction time.
Students work in pairs to measure their reaction time by measuring the
distance a ruler travels as it is dropped between their fingers. Some
questions the teacher might ask are:
Measurement tools are used in many careers and fields of study. People
in different occupations have their own rules and techniques for using
measurement tools correctly. To introduce your students to some tool-use
issues, try the following activities in your class: