Volume Games for 5th Grade

Instructor: David Wood

David has taught Honors Physics, AP Physics, IB Physics and general science courses. He has a Masters in Education, and a Bachelors in Physics.

Learning about volume is much more fun when it's hands-on. So why not try some of these volume games to help keep your students engaged while they learn?

5th Grade Volume Games

Sometimes when teaching volume, it becomes nothing more than a mathematical exercise. Multiply length by width by height and get your answer. Plug numbers into this equation. Figure out the problem. But volume can be made much more interesting and fun for kids through some creativity and games. Try a few of these examples, and see how fast your students learn.

Looks Can Be Deceiving

This game involves comparing differently shaped volumes. Humans are notoriously bad at judging volumes - a large beaker and a can of Pepsi can be the same volume, even though they often don't look it. To play this game, simply give kids bags full of various containers of a medium size. Then have groups pick two out at random, and guess which is bigger, describing the containers and writing down their answer on a piece of paper. Then they can use some water to find out for themselves (give them a jug full of it and something to catch drips).

This can be a fun activity or a competitive game. To make it into a game, each student in the group can receive a point if he guesses correctly. Groups should keep pulling out pairs of containers randomly until they have a sheet full of guesses and answers.

Volume Data Race

For this game, give students a piece of cardstock with a series of 3D shape nets on it. The goal is for students to figure out the total volume of all the shapes added together. They must figure this out by cutting out the nets, folding them into 3D shapes (sticking them together with tape), measuring the sides of the shape, and calculating their volumes. After adding all their answers together, they can announce their number, and you can confirm if it is correct or incorrect. The winner is the first individual or group to come up with the correct answer.

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