Using the SI Staircase - Spring Lake Park Schools

Report
For each of the following commonly used measurements, indicate its symbol. Use the symbols to
complete the following sentences with the most appropriate unit. Units may be used more than
once or not at all. These are your benchmarks.
_____ milliliter
_____ meter
_____ millimeter
_____ kilometer
_____ centimeter
1.
2.
3.
4.
5.
6.
7.
_____ kilogram
_____ milligram
_____ liter
_____ second
_____ gram
Colas may be purchased in two or three _____ bottles.
The mass of a bowling ball is 7.25 _____.
The length of the common housefly is about 1 _____.
The mass of a paperclip is about 1 _____.
One teaspoon of cough syrup has a volume of 5 _____.
Stand with your arms raised out to your side. The distance from your nose
to your outstretched fingers is about 1 _____.
On a statistical basis, smoking a single cigarette lowers your life expectancy
by 642,000 _____, or 10.7 minutes.
SI Staircase
The Complete How-To Guide to Converting between SI Units
Step 1
 Copy
the complete problem.
Leave a small space between the number and the unit.
 Example:
 25
L = ____________ mL

Step 2
 If
there is no decimal point, add one at the end of the
number.
Think about how you would add a period at the end of a
sentence.
 Our Example:
 25 .
L = __________ mL

 If
there is a decimal point, start from there.
Step 3
 Decide,
will you be going from a larger unit to a
smaller unit?

This means you will be going DOWN the staircase.
 So you will be moving the decimal point to the RIGHT.

 Or,
will you be going from a smaller unit to a larger
unit?

This means you w ill be going UP the staircase.
 So you will be moving the decimal point to the LEFT.
 Our Example:
 L to mL, which way are we going?

Step 4
 After
you decide which way the decimal point moves,
draw a small arrow in that direction just above the
number to help you remember which way you are
going to move the decimal point.
 Our
Example: 25.
L = __________ mL
Step 5
 Next,
look at the SI staircase and decide how many
steps you need to move from the given to the
unknown units.
Our example: L to mL
① From liter to deci
② From deci to centi,
③ From centi to milli
⏎
⏎
• We moved down 3 steps so the
decimal point will move three
places to the right.
⏎

Step 6
 Next,

draw in each arrow, one at a time.
Add zero’s to hold place as needed.
 Our example:
 25 . . . . L = ___________ mL
Final placement of
the decimal point.
 Finally,
rewrite the new answer in the blank, including
zeros and the new placement of the decimal point.

25. L = 25000. mL
Let’s do another example
Step 1
 Copy
the complete problem.
Leave a small space between the number and the unit.
 Example:

64.7 cm = ____________ km

Step 2
 If
there is no decimal point, add one at the end of the
number.
 If
there is a decimal point, start from there.

Our Example:
 64.7
cm = ____________ km

There is already a decimal point in our example.
Step 3
 Decide
which direction you are going to move?
Our Example: cm to km
 So we are going from a _________ unit to a _______ unit.


This means we are going ________ the staircase.

So we will be moving the decimal point to the _______.

Step 4
 After
you decide which way the decimal point moves,
draw a small arrow in that direction just above the
number to help you remember which way you are
going to move the decimal point.
 Our
Example: 64.7 cm = ____________ km
Step 5
 Next,
count how many steps we need to move up the
staircase, from centi to kilo.
①
②
⏎
⏎
• We moved up 5 steps so the
decimal point will move five
places to the left.
⏎
⑤
⏎
④
⏎
③
From centi to deci
From deci to meter,
From meter to deka
From deka to hecto
From hecto to kilo
Step 6
 Draw
arrows that swoop to the left , 5 times.
Our example:
. . . . 6. 4 .7 cm = ___________ km
Final placement of
the decimal point.
 Finally,
rewrite the new answer in the blank, including
zeros and the new placement of the decimal point.

64.7 cm =
Practice

Convert the following metric measurements:

1000 mg = _____ g
198 g = _____ kg
8 mm = _____ cm

160 cm = _____ mm
75 mL = _____ L
6.3 cm = _____ mm

109 g = _____ kg
50 cm = _____ m
5.6 m = _____ cm

250 m = _____ km
5 L = _____ mL
26,000 cm = _____ m

14 km = _____ m
16 cm = _____ mm
56,500 mm = _____ km

1 L = _____ mL
65 g = _____ mg
27.5 mg = _____ g

480 cm = _____ m
2500 m = _____ km
923 cm = _____ m

27 g = _____ kg
355 mL = _____ L
0.025 km = _____ cm

similar documents