In my area, we have been a little lacking in the snow department this winter. But, even with just a few inches of snowfall, this math-related snow measurement activity is possible. In this activity, children get to explore the various ways snow can be measured, practice different types of measurement skills, and examine the relationship between snow and liquid water and ice.
There are several ways to have fun with measuring snow. Here are a few ideas to investigate:
- Collect 100 mL (or any given volume) of snow. Measure the mass of this volume of snow. Let snow melt. Time how long it takes to melt. Measure the mass of the liquid water. Record the volume of the liquid water. Compare. How did mass change? How did the volume change? How long did it take for the snow to melt?
- How long does it take 100 mL of fluffy (non-compacted) snow to melt compared to 100 mL of compacted snow?
- What is the temperature of the snow? Let the snow melt. What is the temperature of the water? Compare results.
- Explore the above questions, but this time use ice instead of snow. Then compare the results of the ice to the previous measurements.
- What else? Have students come up with their own ideas for measuring and investigating the snow in different ways.
For further reading about snow, check out my snow-themed nature book list!