Guess what!?!? We had a dinosaur visit our house last night! How do we know, you ask…well because he left footprints. Really REALLY big footprints! See?
We thought we’d have a little fun comparing the big dinosaur foot to Big Brother’s foot. Using non-standard units of measure is a great way to introduce children to the concept of measuring. Legos, blocks, and even dinosaur feet make great measuring sticks for a young child. Once they have an understanding of the basic concept of measurement and have had plenty of opportunities to explore, then we can introduce them to standard units of measure (inches, feet, etc).
Here’s what you’ll need: a dinosaur footprint–if a dinosaur doesn’t make a stop at your house anytime soon, you can make one on a large posterboard. :)
We also used paint to make an imprint of Big Brother’s footprint as well. This made it easier to compare the dinosaur foot to his foot.
For 2-year olds:
- Begin by letting your child walk on the footprint and compare her foot to the dinosaur’s.
- Ask her which is bigger and which is smaller
- Count the toes on one of her feet and then count the dinosaur’s toes. Ask which is more…5 or 3? If she isn’t sure, take out 3 blocks and then 5 blocks and line them up. Then ask which is more.
For 3-years and up:
- Do all of the activities for 2-year olds above
- Ask your how many of her feet equals a dinosaur foot. You might have to explain what the term equals means.
- Make a table on a piece of construction paper. Draw a few items on the left-hand side of the table that your child would like to measure. Make two columns at the top of the table–one for the dinosaur foot and one for your child’s foot. Measure the items and then compare.