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Fill Up the Cup

Foster the scientific curiosity in your child. Have fun exploring the capacity of different containers with him.

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Extending this activity

  • -Explore with containers of various shapes and sizes, including very tall, skinny containers and short, stout containers. Many young children have trouble with conservation, meaning they will see a very tall, skinny glass and think it holds a lot more than it really does. Multiple experiences with activities like this will help develop the concept of conservation.

    -Read the book “Strega Nona” by Tomie dePaolo.

Adjust for an older child

Give the child three containers of different sizes. Ask “If we want to find out how much each container can hold, which of these three cups would we use to measure the capacity of all three containers?” (Guide the child to discover they would need to use the smaller container as the “base” to measure the capacity of all three). Record the capacity of each container along with a picture of each.

Adjust for a younger child

Use different sized containers and allow the child more time to explore with 'big' and 'small' containers by trying to pour the bigger container into the smaller. This will further reinforce the concept of 'bigger' and 'smaller' capacity.

What is being taught through this activity

  • Foundational Literacy/Math Skills: Measurement

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