## Who Sank the Boat?

In this lesson, children will be introduced to weight and balance experiences and apply these experiences at the water table.

### Math Lesson for:

Toddlers/Preschoolers

(See Step 5: Adapt lesson for toddlers or preschoolers.)

### Content Area:

Measurement

### Learning Goals:

This lesson will help toddlers and preschoolers **meet the following educational standards**:

- Understand measurable attributes of objects and the units, systems and processes of measurement
- Apply appropriate techniques, tools and formulas to determine measurements

### Learning Targets:

After this lesson, toddlers and preschoolers should be **more proficient** at:

- Recognizing the attributes of length, volume, weight, area and time
- Understanding how to measure using nonstandard and standard units
- Selecting an appropriate unit and tool for the attribute being measured
- Using tools to measure
- Developing common referents for measures to make comparisons and estimates

## Who Sank the Boat?

### Lesson plan for toddlers/preschoolers

#### Step 1: Gather materials.

**The book,**by Pamela Allen*Who Sank the Boat***A water table or bin large enough to fill with water**and have several children gather around.**Half-pint milk cartons**for every child**A balance scale****Chart paper and markers****Weighted objects**such as pennies, rocks or heavy manipulatives that are small enough to fit into the milk carton boats

**Note**: Small parts pose a choking hazard and are not appropriate for children age five or under. Be sure to choose lesson materials that meet safety requirements.

#### Step 2: Introduce activity.

- Before beginning the activity,
**prepare the milk cartons**. Staple the spout of each carton closed. Cut each carton in half vertically to make 2 boats. Add a sail by taping a paper triangle to a craft stick and placing the stick in a ball of modeling clay in the center of the boat. **Explain**to the children that today they are going to read the book,*Who Sank the Boat,*and try to figure out which animal sank the boat.- Make a list of things that are
**lighter than**,**the same as**and**heavier**than. Divide the chart paper into the three categories and list the children’s answers under the appropriate categories.

#### Step 3: Engage children in lesson activities.

**Read**the book,*Who Sank the Boat*. While reading the story, encourage the children to**make predictions**about the different animals and whether or not they will sink the boat.- After reading the book,
**demonstrate**how the scale/balance is used. Use the weighed objects to determine which object is the**heaviest**, which object is the**lightest**and which objects**weigh the same**. - Give each child a boat. If you have time, you might allow them to decorate their boats to help distinguish the boats from one another.
- At the water table, have the children place their boats in the water. If applicable, you might want to have the children arrange the boats in order from largest to smallest. Using the weighted objects, have the children try to sink their boats. Have them
**experiment**with the objects. How many different objects does it take to sink the boats? How many of the same objects does it take to sink the boat? How many of the**lightest**objects does it take to sink the boat? How may of the**heaviest**objects does it take to sink the boat? Are the boats different? If it takes 10 pennies to sink a boat, does it also take 10 pennies to sink another child’s boat? - Have the children
**record**their results.

**Additional Extensions**

- Blindfold a child (if a child is willing) and have the child take two different objects in his/her hands and compare the
**weight**of the objects.**Ask**: Which object in**heavier**? Which object is**lighter**? Have the children check their answers on the scale.

**Experiment**with objects on a boat.**Challenge**the children to sail the boat with four objects and then find out if the fifth object will sink the boat, just like in the story.

#### Step 4: Teach math vocabulary.

**Heavier**:**heavier**?”)**Lighter**:**lighter**?”)**Heaviest**:**heaviest**?”)**Lightest**:**lightest**?”)**The same**:**the same**.”)**Weigh**:**weighs**more?”)

#### Step 5: Adapt lesson for toddlers or preschoolers.

##### Adapt Lesson for Toddlers

###### Toddlers may:

- Understand the correlation between various weighted objects and the sinking of the boat

###### Home child care providers may:

- Have the children use only one type of weighted object.
**Ask**: “How many pennies does it take to sink your boat?”

##### Adapt Lesson for Preschoolers

###### Preschoolers may:

- Understand the correlation between various weighted objects and the sinking of the boat

###### Home child care providers may:

- Blindfold a child (if a child is willing) and have the child take two different objects in his/her hands and compare the
**weight**of the objects.**Ask**: Which object in**heavier**? Which object is**lighter**? Have the children check their answers on the scale. **Experiment**with objects on a boat.**Challenge**the children to sail the boat with four objects and then find out if the fifth object will sink the boat, just like in the story.

### Suggested Books

by Pamela Allen (New York: Puffin, 1996)*Who Sank the Boat*by Ellen Sturm Niz (North Mankato, MN: Capstone Press, 2006)*Floating and Sinking*

### Music and Movement

**Sing the “Will it Float?” song**:

(Sung to the tune of “When the Saints Go Marching In”)

“*Oh, will it float or will it sink?
Which will it be; what do you think?
Will it stay on top of the water?
Or, like an anchor, will it sink?”*

- “
**Does It Sink? Does It Float?**” (A poem with movement) www.poemfarm.amylv.com/2011/03/does-it-sink-does-it-float-poem-351.html

### Outdoor Connections

**Fill up a wading pool and have the children gather objects to “test” whether the objects will sink or float**. Objects can be either indoor or outdoor objects, but make sure that there are no duplicates. Each child should have an object. Taking turns, the children will put their objects in the pool and see if their objects sink or float. After the children have tested their objects, make two piles: one for objects that float and another for objects that sink.

### Web Resources

**An interactive Sesame Street video that helps children decide whether an object will sink or float**www.youtube.com/watch?v=dy0S1Pv0eOE**An interactive video game about floating and sinking**www.bbc.co.uk/schools/digger/5_7entry/8.shtml

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