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Functional Skills: Scales

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Functional Skills: Scales Revision


In this section, we’ll look at how to measure length, temperature, volume and weight, using scales.

Make sure you are happy with the following topics before continuing.

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Measuring Length

Use a ruler to measure length. Typically, the units on a ruler will be in mm and cm or sometimes even in m on a longer ruler, though some may include inches, with feet on a longer ruler.

Example: Measure the length of this square.

Put your ruler next to the square, making sure you start measuring from 0.

So, we can see that the length of the square is 4 cm.

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Measuring Temperature

We use a thermometer to measure temperature. The units on a thermometer will usually be given as °\text{C}, “degrees Celsius“, with °\text{F}, “degrees Fahrenheit“, along the side.

Example: Measure the temperature on this thermometer in Celsius.

The line indicating temperature is exactly halfway between 20°\text{C} and 30°\text{C}, so the temperature is 25°\text{C}.

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Measuring Volume

A measuring jug / cylinder is used to measure volume. The units will almost always be in ml or litres. It’s very important to make a note here, as different pieces of apparatus will have different maximum volumes. For example, a measuring jug may contain a few litres of fluid, but a measuring cylinder might only contain a few hundred millilitres.

Example: Measure the volume of liquid in this measuring jug, and give the values in millilitres and litres.

The line indicating the top of the fluid reaches 750 ml, which is equivalent to 0.75 litres.

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Measuring Weight

Use a weighing scale to measure weight. The units for these scales are usually in mg, g or kg, though some newer scales will allow you to switch to pounds, ounces.

Example: Assign a label to the weight on the scale below. Convert this value from kilograms to grams.

The scale moves a quarter of the distance between 1 kg and 2 kg, so the mass of the weight is 1.25 kg. This is equivalent to 1250 g.

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Functional Skills: Scales Example Questions

The rectangle is 5 cm long.

The thermometer shows 15°\text{C}.

The measuring jug contains 250 ml of fluid.

The weight has a mass of 875 g.

Functional Skills: Scales Worksheet and Example Questions

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