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 EnchantedLearning.comTemperature and Thermometers Math Activities
Temperature
Temperature is how hot or cold something is. Temperature is really a measure of how fast the atoms and molecules that make up a substance are moving (this movement is sub-microscopic; you cannot see it).

Thermometers Used to Measure Temperature
A thermometer measures the temperature of something, showing how hot or cold it is. There are many different types of thermometers that measure the temperature of different things. We use thermometers to measure the temperature of the air, our bodies, food, and many other things.

There are analog and digital thermometers. An analog thermometer shows the temperature on a scale or dial; a digital thermometer shows the temperature as a number. The higher then number above zero, the higher the temperature.

Temperature Scales
Temperature Fahrenheit Celsius Kelvin
Water Boils 212°F 100°C 373K
Water Freezes 32°F 0°C 273K
Normal Human Body Temperature 98.6°F 37°C 310K
Room Temperature 68°F 20°C 293K
Absolute Zero
(the lowest temperature possible, when molecules have the lowest possible energy)
-459.69°F -273.16°C 0K
Temperature is measured in many different scales, including Fahrenheit, Celsius (or Centigrade), and Kelvin scales. The units of the Celsius and Fahrenheit scales are called degrees; the units of the Kelvin scale are called kelvins. The symbol for degree is °. A change of one degree of temperature Celsius is the same as a change of one kelvin; a change of one degree Fahrenheit is a smaller change in temperature. Each temperature scale is useful for diffferent things.

Fahrenheit is a measure of temperature that is abbreviated F. Water freezes at 32°F and boils at 212°F. This scale was developed by Gabriel Daniel Fahrenheit in 1714. The Fahrenheit scale is used in the USA but not in many other countries. The degrees in Fahrenheit are smaller than those in Celsius, making weather-related temperatures more easily written (without having to use a decimal point).

Celsius (also called Centigrade) is a measure of temperature that is abbreviated C. Water freezes at 0°C and boils at 100°C. This scale was developed by Anders Celsius in 1742.

Kelvin is a measure of temperature that is abbreviated K. Kelvin is a temperature scale designed so that 0K is defined as absolute zero, and the size of one unit is the same as the size of one degree Celsius. [Absolute zero is a hypothetical temperature at which all molecular movement stops. All actual temperatures are above absolute zero. Absolute zero would occur at -273.16°C, -459.69°F, or 0 K.] Water freezes at 273.16K; water boils at 373.16K. Many scientists use this scale (because all the temperatures are positive, making calculations simpler) or the Celsius scale. This temperature scale was designed by Lord Kelvin (William Thomson).

Conversion Formulas
If you know the temperature in one temperature scale you can use a formula to figure out what it is equivalent to in other scales. The conversion formulas are in the table that follows.

 Celsius to Fahrenheit (and Fahrenheit to Celsius): F = 1.8C + 32 C= (F - 32)/1.8 (A degree Celsius is 1.8 times bigger than one degree Fahrenheit.) Kelvin to Celsius (and Celsius to Kelvin): C = K - 273 K = C + 273 (Converting between Celsius and Kelvin is easy because the size of a degree Celsius is the same as the size of a kelvin.)

Activities and Worksheets on Temperature and Thermometers
Writing Worksheets on Temperature

Thermometer Worksheets

Temperature Word Problems

Charts and Graphs

Measuring Temperature
 Measure Temperatures #1:Printable WorksheetA printable activity worksheet on measuring temperature using a thermometer (the student needs a thermometer to complete this worksheet). The student measures room temperature, the temperature outdoors, and skin temperature. The student then answers questions about these temperatures. Go to a pdf version of the worksheet. Measure Temperatures #2:Printable WorksheetA printable activity worksheet on measuring temperature using a thermometer (the student needs a thermometer to complete this worksheet). The student measures the temperature of ice water, cold tap water and warm tap water. The student then answers questions about these temperatures. Go to a pdf version of the worksheet. Weather Calendar to PrintOn this 13-page calendar (a cover plus 12 monthly pages), the student records local temperatures and other weather occurances.

Converting From Scale to Scale
 Convert Temperatures #1:Printable WorksheetA printable activity worksheet on converting temperatures from Fahrenheit to Celsius and vice versa. Or go to the answers. Go to a pdf version of the worksheet. Convert Temperatures #2:Printable WorksheetA printable activity worksheet on converting temperatures from Fahrenheit to Celsius and vice versa. Or go to the answers. Go to a pdf version of the worksheet.

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