Curriculum Tie:


Summary: In this activity students will be finding the volume of rectangular
prisms.
Main Curriculum Tie: Mathematics Grade 5 Strand: MEASUREMENT AND DATA (5.MD) Standard 5.MD.3 Recognize volume as an attribute of solid figures and understand concepts of volume measurement. Materials:
Additional Resources
Books
Counting on Frank, by Rod Clement; ISBN 9780395703939
Math on Call, A Mathematics Handbook, by Great Source Education Group; ISBN 0669
457701
Navigating through Measurement in Grades 35, by NCTM; ISBN 0873535448
Attachments
Background For Teachers: In this activity students will be finding the volume of rectangular
prisms. The volume of a prism is the amount of space inside the
prism. Volume is measured in cubic units, which means it tells how
many cubes of a given size it takes to fill the prism. The formula for
volume of a right rectangular prism is length x width x height. The
formula for volume of a right prism with a triangular base is 1⁄2 (length
x width) x height.
Intended Learning Outcomes:
2. Become effective problem solvers by selecting appropriate methods,
employing a variety of strategies, and exploring alternative approaches to
solve problems.
4. Communicate mathematical ideas and arguments coherently to peers,
teachers, and others using the precise language and notation of mathematics2
Instructional Procedures: Invitation to Learn
Read the book, Counting on Frank, to your students. Discuss all
of the different things the boy measures in the book. Define volume
and look in the book for all of the ways the boy finds volume – 24
Franks in his bedroom, ten humpback whales in the house, 1/10
of his dad in the portable television, peas in the dining room, and
745 jellybeans in the jar. In their journals, have students write a
summary about Frank and his “pet” boy. Have them pick a new
object and write how many of those objects they think it would take
to fill their bedroom. Have some students share their ideas. Explain
that we don't usually measure volume in Franks, humpback whales,
peas, or jellybeans; instead, we use cubic units to measure volume.
Instructional Procedures
 Divide students into partners (or groups) and hand out Let’s
Build Boxes.
 Explain to your class that they are part of a company that builds
boxes. Their department is in charge of making the bottom
part of the box. They need to make different size boxes and
determine how much each box can hold, or the volume of that
box.
 Give each pair of students 4 pieces of twocm graph paper.
 Hold up a sheet of graph paper and demonstrate how to trim it
to a 9 x 11 rectangle.
 Have partners trim each of their sheets of graph paper to a 9 x
11 rectangle.
 Ask students how many unit squares they have on each sheet.
Make sure they understand that each sheet has 99 unit squares.
 Hold up a sheet of trimmed graph paper and cut one unit
square from each corner.
 Fold up the outside rows to make a box. Tape the corners.
 Tell your students to do the same thing to one of their papers.
 Have the partners use multilink cubes to fill their boxes.
 Discuss their findings. What strategies did they use to figure
out how many cubes they would need? Did they have to fill the
entire box with cubes before they knew how many they would
need?
 Have students fill in the information for Box 1 on their Let’s
Build Boxes assessment. You may need to fill in the data for the
first box together as a class.
 Hold up your second sheet of trimmed paper and cut a 2 x 2
unit square from each corner. Fold up the sides to make a box.
 Have partners do the same with one of their sheets.
 Have students make predictions about how many cubes it will
take to fill this new box. Will it be more or less than the last
box?
 Have them use multilink cubes to fill the new box and record
the results on Let’s Build Boxes.
 Discuss their results. How many did it take? Did it take more
or less than the last box? Were their predictions correct? If
not, why do they think their predictions were off? What
strategies did they use to find the number of cubes they needed?
Did they have to fill the entire box before they knew how many
cubes they would need?
 Hold up your third 9 x 11 sheet and cut a 3 x 3 unit square
from each corner. Make it into a box.
 Have partners do the same with one of their sheets.
 Have the class make predictions about how many multilink
cubes it will take to fill the next box. Since it took more cubes
to fill the second box, will it take more for the third?
 Have partners use multilink cubes to fill the new box and
record results on Let’s Build Boxes.
 Discuss their results. Did it take more or less cubes to fill the
third box? Why do they think that is the case? Did they use
any different strategies this time to find the number of cubes
they needed?
 Hold up the final sheet of graph paper and cut a 4 x 4 unit
square from each corner. Make a box.
 Have partners do the same with their last sheet of graph paper.
 Make predictions on how many multilink cubes it will take to
fill the new box. Will it take more or less than Box 3? Why do
they think that?
 Have partners use multilink cubes to fill the new box and
record results on Let’s Build Boxes.
 Have students look for patterns in their table and complete the
worksheet.
 Discuss what they noticed about their worksheet. Did they
find any patterns? Is there an easier way to find volume than
by building boxes and filling them up with multilink cubes?
Have the class come up with a formula for finding volume of
rectangular solids.
 In their journals, have students draw a box and label its
dimensions. Have them write a paragraph explaining their
findings of the activity. Have them record the formula for
volume and find the volume of the box they drew.
 Have students complete the assessment, Which Box?
Extensions: Curriculum Extensions/Adaptations/
Integration
 Have advanced learners come up with the formula for volume
for a right prism with a triangular base.
 Find the volume of other threedimensional shapes.
 Do the activity again with twocm graph paper trimmed to a 9 x
9 square. Have students make as many different boxes as they
can, record the information, and look for patterns.
Family Connections
 Have students tell their families the story of Frank and his “pet” boy.
 Give students a few sheets of twocm graph paper. Have them
work with their family to come up with a box bottom that they
think will hold the most (has the greatest volume). Bring the
boxes back and share their findings with the rest of the class.
Assessment Plan:
 Informal assessment includes class discussion and observations.
 Let’s Build Boxes
 Which Box?
Bibliography: Research Basis
Von Drasek, L. (2006). Teaching with Children’s Books: The “Wow” Factor. ERIC Source
(ERIC # EJ729683). Retrieved December 10, 2007, from eric.ed.gov.
Teaching math through children’s books motivates children to
learn math in exciting new ways; encourages students to think and
reason mathematically and build students’ appreciation for math and
literature.
Ward, R. (2005). Using Children’s Literature to Inspire K8 Preservice Teachers’ Future
Mathematics Pedagogy. ERIC Source (ERIC # EJ738003). Retrieved December 10, 2007,
from eric.ed.gov.
A growing body of research in the fields of mathematics education
and literacy supports the inclusion of children’s literature with teaching
and learning mathematics. The author presents a variety of activities
and ideas that are sound strategies for effectively integrating children’s
literature with the teaching of mathematics. Author: Utah LessonPlans
Created Date : Jul 14 2008 14:09 PM
