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Measuring and Constructing a Frame

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Measuring is an important task for Bob and his crew. Rulers tell us how long or tall objects are. Using cardboard, help your child to measure with a ruler and cut with scissors a 5” x 7” frame to hold a picture.

Learning Goals

  • Measuring
  • Fine Motor
  • Art


10 to 20 minutes


  • Cardboard or cereal box
  • Scissors
  • Ruler
  • Pencil
  • Paint, markers, stickers, and other craft decorations  
  • Tape
  • Blank piece of paper
  • 3” x 5” or 4” x 6” family photo (optional)


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Explain how a ruler works. Each number represents a small distance called an inch. The more inches, the longer or taller an object is. Have your child find the number “5” which measures five inches. Spark your little ones’ curiosity by asking them to guess which objects in the house are five inches long. Then, help them check their answers by measuring with a ruler.

  1. Create a picture frame to show off a family photo or child’s drawing. Provide a piece of cardboard and help your child measure and trace a 5” x 7” rectangle. Show your child how to trace a line along the side of the ruler to mark a line for cutting. Use a book or cereal box as a guide to help get the edges square.
  2. Once the frame is traced, help your child carefully cut along the straight lines. 
  3. Place a family photo in the middle of the frame and trace around it. Set the photo aside while your child decorates the frame part of the cardboard. If you prefer to have your child draw a family picture, measure and cut 4” by 6” piece of paper for this art. Ask questions to encourage your child to add more detail to the family picture.
  4. Color or decorate the frame together. Supply paint, markers, stickers, or other craft material and encourage your child to get creative!

Once the frame is dry, glue or tape the picture or photo to the middle. Hang the frame in a special place around the house, or at your child’s bedside.

Take It Further

  • Measuring is an important skill to master. Practice measuring objects around the house using a ruler. Have your child guess how many inches an object might be, and then check their prediction.
  • Explore other measuring tools. Have family members stand against a door frame. Make a tiny pencil mark to show the height of each person. Use a measuring tape and measure the distance from the floor to each mark to find each family member’s height in inches.

Talk About It

Separation anxiety can be a challenge as children enter preschool and Kindergarten. Having small reminders of their loved ones can help children throughout the day. Place the family photo or picture in your child’s backpack. During a difficult moment, your child can look at the picture and be reminded of their family.

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