Wednesday, 7 June 2017

Form: What is a cubic centimetre like?

Using the PYP key concepts are a fabulous tool for helping children delve deeper into mathematical concepts.

Today we explored the cubic centimetre.

Looking at the PYP key concepts, we thought about which might be the most useful to use first to help us gain a deep understanding of cubic centimetres. Some of is thought 'connection' and explained why they thought so. Others suggested we use 'function' and a few felt perhaps 'causation'  Most of those thought 'form' would be the most useful.  After hearing everyone's reasons, we decided to use 'form' today.

Looking at a plastic cubic centimetre, we used the think-pair-share routine to explore it.

Eventually, our class sharing looked like this:

Though a simple learning experience, it generated a lot of interesting discussions. There was some debate over whether it has to be a cube in shape. To help, we made a cube that was 1 cubic centimetre.  We then squished it down.  Is it taking up the same amount of space? - Yes.  So, what does this tell us? - It is still 1 cubic centimetre because it is the same amount of space; therfore a cubic centimetre does not need to be a cube in shape.

We then found objects in the room and estimated and then measured their volume using cubic centimetre cubes.

We can sometimes overlook the key concept 'form' as being a bit basic. However, when we encourage children to really stretch their minds whilst using it, great understandings and wonderings can be explored. 

To read more about using the key concepts, click the link below:

The Power of Using the PYP Key Concepts in Maths

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