How Much is a Million?
by David Schwartz
and Steven Kellogg
Add Some Personal Context
reading this book to your class, it can be helpful to stop now and then
to add some more personal examples to help drive the point home. For
to the Number The
book says it would take a person 23 days to count to a million.
help children 'remember' how long 23 days really is, count back 23 days
and then say something like "23 days ago
was the day after Halloween. That's a long time ago. Can you imagine if
you did nothing but count numbers, all day and all night since then?"
book says it would take you 95 years to count to a billion.
may not know how long 95 years really is, so you could say "That
would be like if your grandpa or grandma started counting 1,2,3,4... on
the second they were born and did nothing else their whole entire life,
all day and all night. And they STILL wouldn't be
close to counting to a billion." (I think we can assume no
young child has a 95 year old grandparent.)
on the Page The
book says it would take 10 miles of a page of stars (in the book)
to show a billion stars.
have a hard time conceptualizing 10 miles, so think of a well known
place that's ten miles away and tell the children to imagine the paper
going all the way there. If you are really Google Earth savvy, you
could even go from the school to that place electronically.
book says the stars page would stretch from NYC to New Zealand in order
to show a trillion.
students who have never heard of New Zealand or don't know where it is,
you could say "That's half way around the planet" and if you have a
globe in the classroom, show them.
Much is a Million? is a fantastic book, so these additions
aren't meant to suggest that the book is lacking in any way. It's just
helpful to also put the numbers in a personal context.
Idea:How Much Is a
Million and Number Sense (Gr. 2)
The website Teachers.net
lists a lesson using this book. This is a three part lesson, requiring
one hour over three days. The lesson rationale is as follows:
"This activity is intended to provide students with the opportunity to
discover the magnitude of the number 100. This understanding of the
value of a number is termed number sense and can be developed by
allowing students to experience 100 by counting it, measuring it,
feeling it, and doing it, hands-on. Number sense is an important asset
in estimation activities because it enables students to formulate
To read the full lesson plan on the Teachers.net
website, please click here.