Package 3-4 - Kindergarten Mathematics - Fill it up

This task gives your child an opportunity to explore volume and capacity.

Week 4 - Package 4 - Kindergarten Mathematics - Fill it up

Things you need

Have these things available so your child can complete the tasks.


  • A variety of containers

  • water, damp sand or blocks

  • cups or spoons

Why are these activities important?

This task gives your child an opportunity to explore volume and capacity.

Before you start

Make sure you have the required resources ready. You might like to work outside if you’re using water or sand.

What your child needs to know and do

Your child might need some help with filling containers and measuring how much water or sand (if you use these) a container takes. They might also need some support in measuring things accurately.

What to do next

  • Collect some containers.

  • Choose something to fill your containers with such as water, damp sand, or blocks (for example)

    • select just one material.

  • Predict which containers will hold the most and order them from most to least.

  • Pack/fill the containers to determine which can fit the most.

  • Discuss the results

    • if you used blocks, talk about how the blocks can be packed without leaving any gaps

    • Model how to pour and fill the containers, emphasising the use of only one kind of material.

Follow-up questions to ask your child

  • Use the terms such as pack, pour, fill, full and empty, nearly full, etc.

  • Wonder about noticing when a container is full or not full yet, and make comparisons between containers.

    • Tell me about…

    • Do you need another spoon/cup/pot…?

    • Is there anything else you can think of that we could use here to help us? Why would it be useful?

Extension/additional activity

Make a smoothie together!

Ingredients: 1 cup of milk (or non-dairy milk alternative), 1 cup of coconut juice (or another cup of milk), 1 tablespoon of honey (or alternative), 1 cup of frozen berries (or alternative).

Method: Put the ingredients into the blender. Have the adult plug the blender in and turn it on for one minute, at high speed. Stop the blender and unplug it from the wall. Pour the smoothie into individual cups, sharing equally.

As you’re making the smoothie, talk about the mathematics that is surrounding you. For example:

  • Ask your child to count how many berries are in 1 cup

  • Count them backwards into the blender (when it is off and not plugged in)

  • Put a few strawberries in front of the child and ask them to count the pieces one by one before putting them in a measuring cup.

  • Count to 1 minute together by counting the 60 seconds

  • See how many star jumps each person can do in 1 minutes (or a different physical challenge)

  • Do we have equal shares of our smoothie? How do you know?

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