Importance of measurements and shapes


Enviromental awareness

Global Goal


Reasoning and proof, communication, representation, creativity, and team work

Age Group

11-12 years / Grade 6


Students should have understanding of basic ‘Shapes, their Properties and Measurement’


This is an inspiring story of change from PUMS, Tamil Nadu, India, where children were bothered by the issue of dumping plastic bottles causing drainage blocks. They came up with a simple solution of using those bottles to build an economical compound wall. With this experience of creativity, teamwork and environmental awareness, students can see a practical experience of how their core strengths are useful; creativity and both scientific and logical-mathematical thinking are mixed for a common good.

Lesson Plan

  • Show the presentation (16 slides) to the children. Discuss the way forward to replicate the idea in your school. Could we build something to improve our school or any public spaces that we use regularly? 

  • Show some pictures of public spaces of your area that could be more attractive.

TIP: The teacher can divide students into groups and ask them

to  “Think of the basic shapes and their properties. Using them, how would we improve the spaces shown before? We have seen at the presentation how they build walls, what about size (recap measurement)?” How many bottles do they need for different walls? TIP: Represent three-dimensional figures using nets made up of rectangles and triangles, and use the nets to find the surface area of these figures.

  • Then, groups have to make designs of which different shapes do they wish to construct and in what sizes. Suggestion: For a recap of “volume, area and perimeter” students can go to those spaces of the school and take measurements, so they can apply to their designs.
  • Execute:  The teams have to expose their ideas and designs (with measurements, area and perimeters) TIP: they can vote to decide the more realistic and helpful design. Furthermore, students can use different ways to expose the design; presentations, drawings…

    Suggestion:  If students really want to make their design real, can share it in their school and ask for collaboration. Tip: team work, they plan and ask for help to other students for different work: collecting bottles, painting…