Measure Up! Capacity Chart


How much does a container hold? Remember relative liquid measures with this capacity chart.


1. Gather containers of various shapes and sizes for measuring liquid capacity. For example, for U.S. measures, find cup, pint, quart, and gallon containers. Elsewhere, locate containers that measure portions of and whole liters.

2. Add one or two drops of Crayola® Washable Tempera to a pitcher of water. Experiment with containers to determine how many of one unit of capacity it takes to fill another.

3. Use Crayola Construction Paper Crayons to make a capacity chart to record your discoveries. Draw the outline of a large jug. Inside the outline draw increasingly smaller containers. Fill in outlines with bright crayon colors.

4. Work with a partner to practice using your chart, asking questions such as "How many cups are in a gallon?" or "How many milliliters are in a liter?"

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.

Recycled Containers—Must be clean and safe. Do not use containers that contained bleach or other harmful chemicals (for example, household cleaners, dishwasher or laundry detergents). Do not use recycled metal cans that have sharp edges (for example, lids removed by household can openers).


  • Create a kitchen conversion guide to post on the refrigerator. Assemble various kitchen measuring utensils. In the U.S., investigate how many teaspoons make a tablespoon, for example, using sand or colored water. Include half, third, and quarter units to challenge yourself.
  • Use both U.S. system and metric containers to compare and contrast measurements. In what countries is the metric system used? Why has the U.S. delayed adopting this standard for measurement? Research the history on this issue.
  • Prepare a conversion chart that shows equivalent U.S. and metric measurements. Which system do you think is easier to use? Why?

Related Lesson Plans

Lesson Plans

Share on Facebook


crayola supplies
  • Construction Paper™ Crayons
  • Artista II® Washable Tempera Paint
  • Construction Paper
household supplies
  • recycled newspaper
  • paper towels
  • container(s) of water
  • paper doily
  • recycled plastic containers



  • Grades 1 to 3
  • Grades 4 to 6


  • Math
  • Visual Arts


  • 30 to 60 minutes
  • Multiple Sessions


  • Students experiment with various containers to explore standard units of liquid capacity.

  • Students create a diagram to illustrate the capacity of each container, reflecting increasingly larger units of measure.

  • Children challenge each other to compute comparative liquid measures.


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