Young children apply early concepts of measurement in many of their everyday activities. They compare sizes of toys and portions of food, their own height to another’s, different weights, and the lengths of toys and shoes.
They also begin to develop the vocabulary of measurement and comparison, using terms such as longer, shorter, taller, bigger, smaller, wider, heavier, and lighter.
Eventually young children’s sense of measurement develops to include new skills. They build on their abilities to compare and learn to order three or more objects. They come to understand that objects can be measured in different ways. For example, at first they might consider weight and circumference when deciding who has the “biggest” toy. Yet if asked the question Which toy is heavier?, they come to understand that weight is the best measurement to make that comparison.