Teaching Measurement in FDK

This month we worked on measurement!
The FDK expectation that we focused on was:

M2.1 compare and order two or more objects according to an appropriate measure (e.g., length, mass, area, temperature, capacity) and use measurement terms (e.g., hot/cold for temperature, small/medium/large for capacity, longer/shorter or thicker/thinner for length).

Here is our math wall at the end of our unit:

We started by learning about capacity.

One activity we did was writing about what the kids are bigger than after reading the book "I'm the Biggest Thing in the Ocean" by Kevin Sherry.

"I am bigger than a baby."
"I am bigger than a worm."
"I am bigger than my baby brother."
"I am bigger than a butterfly."
"I am bigger than my Dora snacks."

Next we talked about length.
We talked about and compared lengths whole group and then we practiced ordering items from shortest to longest and longest to shortest in small groups.

Then we moved on to temperature.
You can read about our temperature activities in depth here.

 Finally we talked about mass.

First we read this book "Heavy or Light".

Then the students came up with their own heavy or light items.

The next day we started to compare using the terms heavier/lighter.
We held a water bottle in our hands and then came up with items that were heavier or lighter than a water bottle.

(Please excuse the yogurt stains all over the bottom of the chart.. one of my friends had a little yogurt explosion accident at snack time one day!)

One activity that was available during centres was this light and heavy t-chart.
Since we have done this activity with many other measurement concepts (cold/hot, small/big) they were familiar with what to do and could complete it independently or with each other's help :)

Here is a student example.
Light = a lollipop
Heavy = tree

We also used scales to figure out which items were lighter/heavier but unfortunately I don't have any pictures of that :(

That's a snapshot of all of the measurement activities that we have done so far!

How do you teach measurement?


Added 08.11.21:

I now have a full non-standard measurement unit with lesson plans and printables! Click here or on the image below if you are interested in taking a look:

I also now have a digital non-standard measurement unit! Click here or on the images below if you are interested in checking that one out:


  1. I've been following your blog for awhile, I also teach full day kindergarten overseas but with a Nova Scotia curriculum. I love your posts, and when I'm introducing a new math unit I often find myself checking your blog for ideas and suggestions. Thanks again!

  2. You could clearly recognize the length of the unit centimeter on a ruler. This ruler is divided into millimeters and centimeters. The small lines signify millimeters(mm) and long lines on metric ruler signify centimeters(cm). For instance, if you would like to measure 1.3 centimeters, count small 3 lines after 1 long line on your metric ruler. cm to inches