Measurement, the process of quantifying observations, is one of the cornerstones of science. Measurement compares nature—the unknown—to a standard unit—the known. Through such comparison, the organization of the world becomes more comprehensive. The FOSS Measurement module consists of four investigations, each designed to emphasize a particular type of metric measurement—length, mass, temperature, and volume.

FOSS expects students to:

  • Understand the necessity for standard units of measurement.
  • Develop an understanding and intuitive feel for the metric system.
  • Measure length and distance in meters and centimeters with a meter tape.
  • Measure mass in grams with a balance and mass pieces.
  • Measure liquid volume and capacity of containers in liters and milliliters with 50-ml syringes and graduated cylinders.
  • Measure temperature of liquids and air in degrees Celsius with a thermometer.
  • Acquire the vocabulary associated with metric measurement.
  • Exercise language and math skills in the context of metric measurement.
  • Apply appropriate measuring skills in everyday situations.
  • Develop and refine the manipulative skills required for making and using measuring tools.
  • Use scientific thinking processes to conduct investigations and build explanations: observing, communicating, comparing, and organizing.