Beacon Lesson Plan Library

Teacher, We Shrunk the Classroom

Amy Jansen


The students will use the metric system or standard measurement to measure the perimeter of the classroom; area of the floor, walls, chalkboard, teacher desk, student desks, closets, etc. to create a scale model of the classroom.


The student solves real-world problems involving perimeter, area, capacity, and volume using concrete, graphic or pictorial models.


-Yard sticks
-Cardboard and/or Cereal boxes
-Construction paper
-Calculators (optional)
-"RESULTS" Worksheet (attached file)


1. Make sure you have cardboard, cereal boxes, construction paper, scissors, tape, rulers, yard sticks, etc.
2. Have groups chosen ahead of time.
3. Make up a "Results" recording sheet with clear directions (See attached file.)
4. Measure the class items ahead of time to verify the accuracy of the students' measurements.


1. Review the measurement system you will use (metric/standard) as well as perimeter, area, height, width, length, ratio, and scale model.

2. Students work with a partner or group to measure a particular part of the classroom that the teacher assigns to them. (Examples: door, teacher desk, student desk, chalkboard, closet, floor, windows.)

3. Measurements for length, width, height, perimeter, and area are recorded on a "RESULTS" worksheet. All measurements should be double checked for accuracy. Students peer check each other's measurements. The teacher should check all measurements as well.

4. Convert the measurements to 10:1 size on their paper of results.Discuss how to create a scale model. Check all measurements for accuracy.

5. Each pair or group is given the materials to create a scale model of the object they measured out of cardboard, construction paper, etc.

6. Each pair or group adds their model to the scale model to create a replica of the classroom that is 1/10 the size of the actual room.

7. Students write a summary of the sequential steps taken to create the model and read the summary to the class.


Students will fill out a "Results" sheet with the actual measurements they have made for each item; including perimeter, height, width, length, and area. The teacher will check these for accuracy. Then each student will compute a 10:1 ratio for each measurement. Students can peer check one another. Then one student from each group can bring the results to the teacher to be checked. When all measurements are correct, students will make a scale model of their item (table, desk, wall) that is 1/10 the size of the actual item. The teacher will measure these scale models to ensure the students have achieved the desired objective of the lesson. Students will then peer check the scale models of their classmates. The students should be able to accurately measure quantities in the real world and use the measures to solve problems. If students do not have accurate measurements, additional practice will need to be given. A student has mastered the standard being evaluated if he/she uses the correct measurements on the item, calculates the correct scale model ratio numbers, and produces a 3 dimensional scale model based on the perimeter and area measurements taken at the beginning of the lesson.

Attached Files

Student "Results" worksheet to record measurements.     File Extension: pdf

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