Measuring how long things are, how tall they are, or how far apart they might be are all examples of length measurements.
Example: This fork is 8 inches long
These are the most common measurements:
Small units of length are called inches.
The last joint of your finger or thumb is about 1 inch (depending on how big your fingers are!).
You are watching: Things that are a foot long
An inch is defined as exactly 2.54 centimeters (a metric measurement)
Lots of things are measured in inches from rainfall to paper length.
Measuring in inches gives us a way for everyone to understand the size of something.
When we have 12 inches together, it is known as a foot.
1 foot = 12 inches
A long time ago, people used their feet to measure things. But everyone has different sized feet so it did not work very well.
Using 12 inches put together to make one foot lets everyone have an accurate picture of what exactly a “foot” of length is.
When 3 feet are together, it is called a yard.
(This isn’t the same thing as a garden, though they are both referred to as a “yard”!)
1 yard = 3 feet
The length of this guitar is about 1 yard.
When we put together 1,760 yards, we have a mile.
1 mile = 1,760 yards = 5,280 feet
Miles are long distances and are mostly used to measure the distance between places which are far away from each other. Most people refer to miles when they are driving, biking or jogging.
To remember how many feet in a mile think:
Five tomatoFive two eight oh5,280 feet in a mile
Final thoughts about measuring length:
1 foot = 12 inches
1 yard = 3 feet = 36 inches
1 mile = 1,760 yards = 5,280 feet = 63,360 inches
From Miles to Kilometers
A mileis exactly 1.609344 kilometers. Yes, the mile has a metric definition.
Example: what is 55 miles in kilometers?
55 miles × 1.609344km/mile = 88.51392 km
Quick but not accurate Conversions
Here is a funny thing!Thesenumberscanhelp us do conversions:
0, 1, 1, 2, 3, 5, 8, 13, 21, 34, 55, 89, 144, …
It is the Fibonacci Sequence, which is made by adding the two previous numbers each time. Example: 5+8=13, 8+13=21, etc.
Its pairs of numbers can help us convert between miles and kilometers.
The first few numbers don”t work well, but let”s look at “3, 5”:
3 Miles is About 5 km (3×1.609344= 4.828032)
And “5, 8”: 5 Miles is About 8 km (5×1.609344= 8.04672)
And “8, 13”: 8 Miles is About 13 km (8×1.609344= 12.874752)
And so on.
(Why? Because the ratiobetween pairs of numbers gets closer and closer to the Golden Ratio of 1.6180… which just happens to be nearly 1.609344)
Lots of Examples
An inch is:
about the width of a large thumb
A foot is:
about the length of a large footslightly more than 30 centimeters
A yard is about:
half the length of a bed the width of a large fridge the height of a countertop four rungs up a ladderfive steps up a staircasethe length of a bike the depth of the shallow end of a swimming poolthe width of a dining tablethe length of an acoustic guitarthe height of a 5 year oldshoulder to opposite wrist of an adultoutstreched arms of a childwaist high on an adulta long stride
A mile is about:
how far you walk in 20 minutes2,000 paces1,000 counts of “left-right” when marching (as the Roman Centurions marched!)exactly 1.609344 kilometers