What’s Smaller Than You?

You may feel like your entire day is filled with Q&A, and that’s a good thing, but teaching kids scale is a tricky business and a concept that can be difficult to understand. So if your kids are always asking, “How small is that?” OR “How large is that?” Here are a few resources for you. 

pigmy shrewThe book, “What’s Smaller Than a Pigmy Shrew?” by Robert E. Wells is a fantastic book to get your kids started on the concept of “small”. It breaks things down to their smallest components in a way that creates wonder and excitement for your kids. The publisher list ages 6-11 years, but we started showing this to our son when he was 4 years old, and he loved it. It sparked tons of questions and investigations. Of course, we had to get a microscope to let him see for himself just how small things were. The fun part was seeing a small tick, living in a dime sized swatch of moss, eating a nematode. So cool!!!

Scaleofuniverse.com developed by Cary Huang gives an even broader range of the size of things from the Universe to a Planck length.  The interactive display starts you off with things on the human scale, from there you can scroll to the right or left and watch how everything dramatically increases and decreases in size.

Another great site, visit NASA and learn about the Planck mission that is helping to map the history and fabric of our universe.