Short Blocks

Maths Year 4 Summer Measures and Data (A)

Each unit has everything you need to teach a set of related skills and concepts.

Unit 1 Measure in m, cm, mm; convert units (suggested as 2 days)

Planning and Activities

Day 1 Teaching
Before the lesson, draw round the outline of two children and an adult from other classes. Bring these to lesson and display. Show a metre stick. Use this to estimate the heights of the outlines. Measure one of the outlines and model how we record this: 134cm is 1 metre and 34cm or 1.34m. Repeat with the other two outlines.
Group Activities
-- Convert height measurements from centimetres to metres and centimetres.
-- Convert distance measurements (aeroplane heights) from metres to kilometres.

Day 2 Teaching
Show some pencils. Discuss what unit to use to measure them. Explain that using millimetres will give a more accurate measurement. Model accurate measuring and show on the IWB with pictures of a pencil and ruler. Write: length = 125mm. Recall that 1cm = 10mm. So, we divide 125mm by 10 to get 12.5cm. Repeat with other millimetres to centimetre conversions.
Group Activities
Use the ‘Timeline’ in-depth problem-solving investigation below as today’s group activity.
Or, use these activities:
-- Measure lines in millimetres and convert them to centimetres.

You Will Need

  • People outlines
  • Metre stick
  • Mini-whiteboards and pens
  • ‘Height’ recording table (see resources)
  • Blank cards
  • Sticky tack
  • Rulers
  • Sharpened coloured pencils


Day 1
Convert measurements from centimetres to metres and vice-versa

Day 2
Measure lines in millimetres and convert them to centimetres.

Mastery: Reasoning and Problem-Solving

  • Look at these lengths. Estimate their accuracy.
    Tick if they look correct.
    -- Car length: 4.5m
    -- Cat, nose to tail: 0.42m
    -- Mobile phone: 15mm
    -- Wax crayon 100mm
    -- Teaspoon: 200cm
  • Write the missing numbers or units.
    3.4cm = ☐mm
    ☐cm = 2.35m
    10m = 1000☐
    129mm = ☐cm
    3400mm = 3.4☐

In-depth Investigation: Timeline
Children use their knowledge about millimetres, centimetres and metres to create a scale timeline from 0 to the current year, and gain some sense of the order of historical events.

Extra Support

Expert Estimates
Estimating in metres and centimetres

Unit 2 Use SI units; bar charts (suggested as 3 days)

Planning and Activities

Day 1 Teaching
Ask children what units we use to weigh things. Agree kilograms and grams. Remind children that 1000g = 1kg. Pass round packets of food and look at the mass/weight on each packet. Use Measuring scales ITP to practise reading a scale, noting various divisions. Show a loaf of bread/ bag of loose apples. Using the class scales to weigh these items. Record, e.g. 1kg and 300g = 1300g = 1.3kg.
Group Activities
-- Weigh food items in grams and convert the mass/weight to kilograms, and vice versa.

Day 2 Teaching
Show a bag of groceries (around 2kg) and a full PE bag (less than 1kg). Invite children to compare each mass/weight with a 1kg weight, and to make an estimate based on this. Weigh the bags, noting how many kilograms and grams each one weighs. Record in three ways: 2kg and 300g, 2.3kg and 2300g. Weigh a selection of toys and record each mass/weight in a table.
Group Activities
-- Use scales to find and compare masses/weights in grams and kilograms. Display these on a bar chart.

Day 3 Teaching
Today children will carry out their own measuring investigations (length or mass). They can choose what their investigation will be about but it must be simple and answer a question. Give some examples, e.g. Do boys have longer arms than girls? Are apples heavier than bananas? Have a variety of toys, books and other objects for children to use.
Group Activities
Use the ‘Pencil power’ in-depth problem-solving investigation below as today’s group activity.
Or, use these activities:
-- Design a measurement enquiry; measure, then record results in a bar chart.
-- Begin to explore averages by weighing a large number of lighter objects and dividing the total as necessary.

You Will Need

  • Packaged foods, weighing scales and flipchart
  • ITP: Measuring Scales
  • A selection of food items to weigh
  • Blank cards for shop signs
  • Bag of groceries (1–3kg) and PE bag (<1kg)
  • 1kg, 500g, 100g weights and Cm² paper
  • Selection of toys
  • Five heavy objects to weigh
  • Variety of toys, books, fruit and vegetables
  • Large sheets of squared paper
  • £1 coin, 50p coin, 1g, 5g and 10g weights
  • Electronic pan balance
  • Knives, forks and dessert spoons

Mental/Oral Maths Starters

Day 1
Convert between units of measurements (pre-requisite skills)

Suggested for Day 2
Mark tenths on a line (simmering skills)

Suggested for Day 3
Place numbers on empty lines of different lengths (simmering skills)


Day 1
Convert masses/weights from grams to kilograms and vice-versa.

Day 2
Compare and order masses/weights in grams and kilograms.

Day 3
Display information about mass/weight in a bar chart.

Mastery: Reasoning and Problem-Solving

  • True or false?
    350g is the same as 1kg and 35g.
    1199mm is the same as 1.199m.
    23.4cm is the same as 234mm.
    72g is the same as 0.72kg
  • Look at the mass/weight of these items. Estimate their accuracy. Tick if they look correct.
    Large dictionary: 2.1kg
    An apple: 500g
    Mobile phone: 0.02g
    Pair of wellies: 400g
    Teaspoon: 0.2kg
  • Convert each measurement to metres
    (a) 600cm
    (b) 180cm
    (c) 1300mm
    (d) 50mm
  • Convert each measurement to kilograms
    (a) 2500g
    (b) 1090g
    (c) 575g

In-depth investigation: Pencil Power
Children use larger weights and numbers to find an accurate weight of one pencil. Collect data on a bar graph.

Extra Support

In the Balance
Continue to practise weighing objects and reading from different scales.