The St. Louis fourth and fifth grade students in Ms. Shuey’s Title I math class used the technique of visualizing volume to estimate and determine the number of Skittles in a 3-dimensional rectangular prism.
They wanted to win the Guess the Number of Skittles Contest!
Visualizing Volume to Estimate and Determine the Number of Skittles
The following are the students’ work and their discoveries:
- First we made a ball park estimate. Our estimate was 200 Skittles. That was OK, but we wanted an exact number.
- The second step was to count the number of Skittles in the 3-D rectangular prism.
- Thirdly, we worked to VISUALIZE this:
- For the fourth step, we learned to deconstruct the rectangular prism into layers.
The h = the number of layers.
Then find the area (l x w) of each layer.
- During the fifth step, we learned the easiest way to figure it out: How to find the volume of a Rectangular Prism!