Lesson: Unit Conversions: Inches & Feet

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Lesson Objective

SWBAT convert units of measurement: inches to feet, and feet to inches

Lesson Plan

Materials Needed: Ruler, lined paper, white board, dry erase markers, IND Practice Worksheet

Customary, Metric, inches, feet, multiplication, division


Do Now (5-7min): Each student is given a ruler and a blank sheet of lined paper. Teacher says, “I want you all to take the next five minutes to find five things in the classroom that are the same length as this ruler. When you find something that is the same length, write it down on your paper.” When students have found five items and are back in their seats, teacher says, “Can I have a couple of volunteers to tell me some of the things that you found?”

Opening (3-5 min): Teacher says, “Yesterday, we compared the Customary and Metric systems of measurement. Today, we are going to talk about two units of measurement: inches and feet. Who can tell me what system of measurement these units belong to?” [Customary]

Teacher should state objective at end of the opening, “Very good! Today we are going to talk about the relationship between inches and feet. By the end of this lesson, you will all be able to convert inches to feet and feet to inches.”

Direct Instruction (7-10min): Teacher holds up a ruler to the class and says, “This is the same ruler that you all used during your Do Now, and this ruler is exactly one foot long. Can someone tell me how many inches are shown on a ruler?” [12] “Good, so that means that there are 12 inches in every foot.” Teacher writes 1 foot = 12 inches on the white board. Teacher says, “So if I had two rulers laying end to end, how many feet would I have?” [2] Teacher says, “If I have two feet, how many inches do I have?” [24]

Teacher writes 2 feet = 24 inches on the board and says, “That’s great, so we know that 2 feet is equal to 24 inches. Ok, who can tell me what sort of math they used to decide that 2 feet is equal to 24 inches?” [I added, I multiplied, I divided, I counted on my finger, etc.] Teacher writes the word inch on the board and says, “Ok, I hear a lot of great answers, but I want to make one thing very clear, when you are talking about inches and feet, which unit is smaller?” [Inch] Teacher writes smaller next to inch and says, “Which unit is bigger?” [Foot] Teacher writes foot and bigger on the board and says, “If I want to go from inches to feet, which math operation would I use since inches are smaller than feet?” [Division] Teacher writes the division sign under the word inch and says, “Great! If I want to go from feet to inches, since a foot is bigger than an inch, which math operation would I use?” [Multiplication] Teacher writes the multiplication sign under the word foot.

Teacher says, “Awesome! When we are converting back and forth between inches and feet, we use multiplication and division. To make this easier to understand, I am going to show two formulas.” Teacher writes inches ÷ 12 = feet and feet x 12 = inches on the board and says, “Can someone guess why I put a 12 in both formulas?” [Because there are 12 inches in a foot]

Guided Practice (10-15 min): Teacher writes the following on the board:

1.    3 feet = _____________ inches [36]
2.    24 inches = _______________ feet [2]
3.    4 feet = ________________ inches [48]
4.    7 feet = _________________ inches [84]
5.    36 inches = ____________ feet [3]
6.    9 feet = ________________ inches [108]
7.    120 inches = ____________ feet [10]
8.    2 feet = _______________ inches [24]
9.    72 inches = ____________ feet [6]
10. 5 feet = _____________ inches [60]

The teacher says, “Alright, the best way to learn how to convert units of measurement is to practice. I have written ten different problems on the board. We are going to solve these together.” Teacher goes through each problem, demonstrating how to choose which formula to use and modeling how to write the formula for every problem. Students should be called on through the guided practice for answers.

Independent Practice (10 min):
Teacher gives each student their own copy of the Independent Practice (IND) worksheet. Teacher circulates the room to answer individual student’s questions.

Closing (2-3 min): Teacher calls the attention of the students back toward the front of the class to quickly review the answers to the Independent Practice worksheet.

Lesson Resources

IND Practice inches and feet   Classwork


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