Liter Meter: Experiment With Volume


How much is a liter? Make a mental switch to metric by pouring, measuring, and creating a handy chart to compare volumes. Go metric!


1. Are you ready to Go Metric? Even though the United States is not yet fully using the metric system, you can find metric measurements by reading labels. To understand how much liquid one liter is, compare it to familiar (imperial) volume measurements. Work in teams if possible.

2. Experiment! Find a one-liter bottle, such as a water bottle. Wash and dry it. Gather five or six different measuring tools such as cups and containers with printed volume amounts. Fill the containers with water. How many of each of them do you think you will need to fill the liter bottle? With Crayola® Erasable Colored Pencils, write your estimates.

3. Mark water levels. One container at a time, use a funnel to pour water into the liter bottle. Draw a line on the bottle with Crayola Markers to show the water level for each container. Choose a different color for each measurement. Keep notes for your color key. Continue filling, counting, and emptying the measuring tool into the bottle until you have one liter. Compare these findings to your estimates. Empty the bottle before experimenting with another measuring tool.

4. Make a chart. Use Crayola Scissors to cut posterboard as tall as the liter bottle and about twice as wide. Lay the bottle on the poster. Extend the lines from the bottle on to the cardboard using the same colors. Label your lines. Title your display. With Crayola School Glue, attach the bottle to your chart. Air-dry the glue. Stand up your display to Think Metric.

Safety Guidelines

Adult supervision is required for any arts & crafts project. Observe children closely and intervene as necessary to prevent potential safety problems and ensure appropriate use of arts and crafts materials. Some craft items, particularly beads and buttons, are potential choking hazards for young children. Avoid use of such small parts with children younger than 3 years. Craft items such as scissors, push pins and chenille sticks may have sharp points or edges. Avoid use of materials with sharp points by children younger than 4 years. Read all manufacturers' safety warnings before using arts and craft supplies.

Scissors—ATTENTION: The cutting edges of scissors are sharp and care should be taken whenever cutting or handling. Blunt-tip scissors should be used only by children 4 years and older. Pointed-tip scissors should be used only by children 6 years and older.


  • Convert your favorite recipes into metric measurements.
  • Continue estimating metric measurements by extending it to sports. Chart distances such as a 5K race (54 football fields end-to-end) or 10-meter diving platform (3-story building).
  • Target a date to make your classroom completely metric.
  • Assessment: Ask teams to switch measuring tools and charts, and verify results the other group found. Erase to make corrections.

Related Lesson Plans

Lesson Plans

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crayola supplies
  • Erasable Colored Pencils
  • Markers
  • No-Run School Glue
  • Pointed Tip Scissors
  • Construction Paper
household supplies
  • posterboard
  • paper towels
  • recycled plastic containers
  • funnel
  • measuring tool



  • Grades 1 to 3
  • Grades 4 to 6


  • Math
  • Science
  • Visual Arts


  • 30 to 60 minutes
  • Multiple Sessions


  • Students estimate, record, and compare volume using the metric and the customary US system.

  • Students experiment to visually show comparison volumes between metric and the US inch-pound system.

  • Students fabricate a display to illustrate their findings.


Research Canada Standards
Research UK Standards
Research U.S. Standards