A project-based approach to involve students in creating a map of their school and make an estimation about the area of the school.
Purpose: To build the ability of students to read maps and to learn to draw a map of their school having a scale of 1 cm equal to 10 meters. This activity will also help the students to find the section of their school that occupies the maximum area.
Measure the area of the school (non-standard, in feet):
Each group consists of 5 students. The students measured the areas of different sections in the school, such as the veranda, the classrooms, the prayer hall, the table, and so on, using their feet and hand. After this, I asked my students to convert the non-standard unit to a standard unit. I gave them a rough measurement that a 5 feet span would equal to 1 meter. But, it was found that some students covered a greater distance as compared to others in the same number of feet spans owing to the differences in the feet-size and their unequal gaps between two steps. The students were made aware of this mismatch in measurement through a discussion. The students continued to measure the area with their feet spans and converted it into meters. Then, they were asked to draw a rough school map in their notebooks by scaling down 10 meters to 1 cm. The students faced a lot of difficulty to scale down the measurements. Hence, they were asked to visually estimate the space and the boundaries of the rooms and pathways and draw them in their notebooks.
Measuring class using feet span.
Drawing of the rough school map:
After the previous exercise, the students cut the graph paper and pasted it on a chart to create the school map. They marked the classrooms, the veranda, the hall, the playgrounds, and other structures in the map, which were then coloured using crayons of different colours. They also drew plants in the garden to make their map look more attractive. The windows and doors of the classroom were also indicated in the map. At the end of the exercise, the students found that the prayer hall occupied the maximum area in the school.
Map of the school created by the students
This method allowed the students to explore the concepts of the lesson through a hands-on activity, and it also improved their confidence. They were able to find the area of their school by counting the boxes in graph sheet and by using the formula of calculating the area of a rectangle (length x breath) and a square (side x side)
Teacher: M. Ramakrishnan. PST, GPS Sulthanpet.
Term: Term 3