Saturday, 2 March 2013

Perimeter Farm

We finally finished our perimeter farms!

Mind you, the mathematical part was finished some time ago but it took my little girls a l-o-o-o-ng time to decorate their farmyard. Apparently pigs require a playground and hens need water beds and tvs!

This was an awesome math project to practice measurement and perimeter. I divided everyone into groups and gave them a specific part of the farmyard to build. We had a pig pen, a chicken run, a horse paddock and a duck pond. Each group was given the perimeter that their enclosure had to be and the perimeter of a small building or feature inside that enclosure. They had to construct walls or fences around the edges and then were allowed to decorate any way they wanted. No animals were allowed to move in until Farm Inspector # 1 deemed it suitable :)

Step 1: Figuring out dimensions

Step 2: Drawing and glueing the base

Step 3: Building the walls - the girls had to measure these carefully, decide how high to make them, double the height and add 4 cm ( for flaps at the bottom to make the walls stand up). This took quite some time and a lot of groaning and moaning was heard but I made sure to stay completely out of it and they all managed beautifully!


Step 4:

Constructing the internal feature - this was a fountain for the ducks, houses for the hens and pigs and stalls for the horses. Props were required to make sure the animals would fit :)

Step 5: Endless decorating!! We started with a plain house or fountain but my creative kiddies kept going! They added trees and water lilies, playground equipment and TVs, ponds and piles of hay - I finally had to call it quits and say, "The farm is now FINISHED!"

The hen yard before the decorating
The duck pond - this group was
actually quite restrained.

The finished farm :) My girls played with this for about an hour on Friday afternoon, moving the animals around, making up little plays and really enjoying themselves. And the best part of it all was...
it was a MATH project!! And they made it all themselves :)

I actually put this project into my Farm Problems pack available here but really it's quite easy to do. Last year we made it as a perimeter zoo (on a smaller scale) and that was a successful project too.

This is a picture of one of the groups last year - they made a Tiger Pit :)

It's a great project and really gives the students an idea of the practical application of perimeter. Mind you, I don't know what I'm going to do with this giant farm now - I have to find somewhere to put it at least until the end of term!! :)


  1. I love this activity - we often find perimeter and area for fake playgrounds, gardens etc but I never thought to have them make the actual object. Thanks for sharing!

    Looking From Third to Fourth

  2. Wow! How cute is that! You have the BEST project ideas!! I LOVE it!!!

    Are you guys on a rigid pacing for curriculum in order to get everything in for a standardized test? I wasn't sure how different it is there?

    Collaboration Cuties

    1. We started a new Math program this year that spirals through the year so we repeat every concept every term (3 terms) We work in blocks (A through E) and each term the blocks expand on the learning. SInce this is the first year we don't actually know how it's going to work with our standardized test - we take the British National Curriculum tests in May every year. I'm feeling a little stressed by it at times. I love the new curriculum because it allows for a lot of differentiation and hands on learning and it allows for constant review of concepts but there's only a specific amount of time allowed for each topic so sometimes I feel like I've barely skimmed the surface. I've found I absolutely cannot teach whole class Maths anymore - it's all center work so I can check the kids who didn't grasp the concept from the previous term, keep the middle group going and find things to do for the extension kids. It's a LOT of work - and requires a lot of charts and checklists. There are definitely mixed feelings about it in our school but overall I think it's a great program. I should do a post about it - and see what everyone else does. I like looking at curriculums :)


  3. Love it, Lynn! We have perimeter and area coming up--I may have to do some version of this! :) You really do amazing work with your students!