Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Measurement with Marbles!

Class: Measurement with Marbles!
(lessons/kit available from Math Learning Center)
Dates: February/March 2010
Course Description: Measurement with Marbles gives children an opportunity to use mathematics in the context of scientific research. In this unit, students make ramps with household cardboard tubes to investigate some of the factors that cause marbles to roll farther and faster. They measure the distances their marbles roll (and learn to average) as they change the ramp heights, the ramp lengths, and marble masses. Finally, they apply the understandings they've gained as they design mega-marble rolls -- pathways designed to get the marbles to do a series of specified tasks. (Great for co-ops, btw!)

Do the math...

toilet paper tubes
paper towel tubes
wrapping paper tubes
marbles (of many masses)
wooden blocks
unifix cubes
lots and lots of masking tape

= lots and lots and lots of fun, making meaning in MATH!

Quote from one 7yo student: "We've been putting blocks on top of each other to see how far the marble goes. You have to make the unifix cubes so they're even (averaging.) It's really fun!"

Photos from our last class coming soon...MEGA MARBLE ROLLS! ;)


  1. What a neat project! I love it. Thanks for showing.

  2. Could this be done with Bakugan? I've been thinking about creating a measuring work for my 6 year old using Bakugan...this sounds similar.

  3. I first had to look up what Bakugan was. ;) If you mean the toys that roll, I'm not sure... What did you have in mind? Can you describe it a bit more? I suppose the Bakugan could roll down tubes (if it fits), but I'm not sure how you'd get smooth/accurate rolls to test against each other since each time it rolls it would hit the grooves differently. Did you have a different idea? I did find some ideas when I googled "Bakugan math" but I didn't have time to read through them.


Thank you for leaving me a message. I love comments almost as much as I love chocolate! And I do LOVE chocolate. :)

Related Posts with Thumbnails
Blogging tips