I enjoy teaching kids about weights and measures, which are great topics to cover in preschool and kindergarten. We have done several activities using a balance scale over the years, such as our Easter Egg balance scale activity. As part of our apple unit, however, I wanted to add a bit more complexity to our balance scale activities. Therefore, I asked my kids the question, “What weighs more than an apple?”
Note: For more apple activities, see my Apple Unit Study page.
Apples are different sizes, of course. But we decided to use a medium sized green apple we had in the kitchen as our apple of comparison. We loaded the apple into one bucket on our balance scale set.
Then the kids helped me gather items from around our house that would fit into a bucket on our balance scale set. We took turns placing each object into the other bucket and deciding whether it weighed more, less, or the same as our apple. Our geode, as you can see in the photo below, clearly weighed less than our apple.
But I didn’t want to stop with simply knowing what objects weighed more and what objects weighed less. So I asked my kids, “How much more/less does this object weigh than the apple?”
We decided to measure the difference in weight using the counting bears that came with our balance scale set. So we added bears to the bucket with the item that weighed less until the two sides balanced out. In the picture below, you can see that we added a few too many bears to the geode’s bucket at first!
Then we repeated the activity with several more objects, including the large pink cube from our Montessori pink tower set (pictured), a plastic ball, a box of cards, and some plastic coins.
We sorted all of the objects into piles based on whether they weighed more, less, or the same as the apple. We also made a line of the counting bears next to each object to show how much more or less each object weighed compared to the apple.
Very simple. Very effective. And wonderfully hands-on. I love these kinds of preschool math activities for kids. 🙂
More apple resources
More apple posts from Gift of Curiosity:
- Apple Unit Study
- Apple Printables Pack
- Apple Do-a-Dot Printables
- Apple taste testing
- Apple rotting experiment
- Dissecting an apple
- Apple sensory bin
- Apple Montessori activities