# Need help with the metric system-------->

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My ds is doing chemistry this year and his having such a difficult time converting liters to milliliters, m to km and so forth. What can I use to help him since I'm also having a hard time with it.

Thank you,

Judy

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If you've done Latin, you go back to the Latin roots - milli, kilo, etc. Milli is 1/1,000,000th. And kilo is 1000. Centi is 1/100th. (Then there are deca and deci which are confusing but not used very often anyway.) One way to remember which is bigger and which is smaller is to remember that people are usually measured in kilograms and a paper clip weighs about a gram. Then if you look at a standard ruler, millimeters are the smallest thing on it.

Once you have the prefixes down, the rest is easy since it's the same for meters, liters, and grams.

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Coverting is not hard if you write it down. This is what we do.....memorize the prefixes in this order: kilo, hecto, deca, unit, deci, cent, milli. Now if you have 3.2 decaliters and need to change it to centililers, write down 3.2 under the deca and count 3 units to centi. Move the decimal point 3 places to the right.

Hope this helps and doesn't confuse you more.

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Here's another way. Use this little ditti:

King Henry died Monday drinking chocolate milk

Use the first letter in each of the words to represent the metric words:

Converting from Km to m you need to move the decimal point to the right, how many? Start at the King and move it one space to the right for every word until you get to the Monday.

King Henry died Monday

1Km = 1000m

king henry died monday

to go from cm to meters:

King Henry died Monday drinking chocolate milk

chocolate to Monday, hmmm need to move the decimal place to the left, how many? monday drinking chocolate

1cm = 0.01m

cm to mm:

chocolate milk

1cm to mm

move the decimal place one to the right

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