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Getting a sense of inches and feet

Explore inches and feet as units of length. Learn to visualize an inch with a quarter or thumb and understand a foot equals 12 inches. The video includes examples of when to use inches or feet for measuring various objects. Created by Sal Khan.

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  • aqualine ultimate style avatar for user Ella Z🌲▼・ᴥ・▼🧸
    What is a cm?
    (14 votes)
    • hopper cool style avatar for user Philip
      A cm, or centimeter, is one-hundredth (1/100) of a meter.
      So if you have 1 centimeter, you have 0.01 meters; and 100 centimeters equals 1 meter. When converting from centimeters to meters, you just move the decimal toward the left by two place values. And when converting from meters to centimeters, you multiply by 100.

      Centimeters is a very small unit of measurement. In the previous video, Sal Khan says that a centimeter is only the width of a fingernail, while a meter is the length of a guitar.
      (30 votes)
  • blobby green style avatar for user Lola Ayans
    How does 12 inches=1 foot
    (4 votes)
    • blobby green style avatar for user chnapak.games
      Don't try looking for a logical explenation.

      Before meters and grams people used units based of various body parts or items they could find. Among those belonged inches and feet. Inches are the length of three grains of barley and on the other hand feet are as the name suggests the length of a human foot. But as you may know feet and seeds aren't always the same length. So the local goverments and rulers (no pun intended) created standards, which were placed at public places to prevent frequent market scams caused by unstandardized measurements.

      Alongside these standardized lengths also came simpler conversions of such lengths so that each unit of length would fit inside each other neatly by multiplying or deviding with integers (1, 2, 3 ...).

      So to summerize units were created using various items or body parts which were later on standardized and assainged interger conversions between those units to simplify the work with them.
      (16 votes)
  • mr pink green style avatar for user 2045687
    What is the U.S. system?
    (6 votes)
  • male robot hal style avatar for user 💖VPT💖
    Where can we Appley "FOOT"? 🤔
    (1 vote)
    Default Khan Academy avatar avatar for user
    • winston default style avatar for user Rayyan Zaheer
      The unit of measurement known as a 'foot'—what I believe you are talking about—can be used in many different ways and areas. However, if you are asking where we can apply this unit of measurement, logic and efficiency is needed. We usually apply the measurement of foot when the measurement exceeds twelve inches and translate it to 'feet' (plural of foot). So, in conclusion, we can apply foot when the dimensions of the object we are measuring exceed twelve inches or are hard to understand simply using the unit of inch.

      Hope this helps!
      (3 votes)

Video transcript

- [Instructor] In this video, I'm going to introduce you to two units of measuring length. The first is the inch, which you might have heard about. And you're probably thinking, "How long is an inch?" Well, if you're familiar with a quarter, a quarter looks something like this. You see George Washington on it. A quarter is almost an inch. So an inch might be something like that. One inch. Another way to think about it is when I'm looking at my thumb, and I'm a grown man, at least physically (chuckles), my thumb is about two inches in length. So my thumb is about two inches in length. One inch and two inches. Depending on your age, if you're watching this and let's say you're eight years old, seven or eight years old, your thumb might be closer to an inch or maybe a little bit over an inch. Now the other unit of measurement, you can view it as a bunch of inches put together. And if you put 12 inches together, you get what is known as a foot, a foot. Now the word foot is used for many things in our language, including for our individual feet, or the things at the ends of our legs. And I believe, I'm not sure where the unit of measurement of the foot came from, but they might be related because actually my foot is almost a foot. And in fact, my shoes, and I wear a size, I wear a men's size 10 1/2, my sneakers that I wear are almost exactly one foot. And you can sometimes see it written as ft, short for foot. Now, clearly not everyone's foot is exactly a foot 'cause everyone's feet and shoes have different lengths, but that gets you a sense of how large a foot is. Another way to think about it, and as I just mentioned, if you put 12 inches together, you get one foot. 12 inches equals one foot. So let me give you some objects. And I want you to pause the video and think about, would you measure them in foot or inches or whether the measurements themselves sound like measurements in feet or inches. So if I give you a piece of paper, a regular piece of paper, kind with the holes on it and the nice lines. So a piece of paper right over here. If I were to tell you that the height of this paper is 11 something, would that be 11 inches or 11 feet? Well, if was 11 feet, that would be a huge piece of paper. That would be a piece of paper taller than me. That would be more of a carpet than a piece of paper. So a piece of paper, actually a standard piece of paper is 11 inches tall. Now, if we were to go outside and play a little basketball, so this is the basketball, or that's the backboard. And then we have the hoop, the hoop, we have the net, and then we have the post holding it up. Let me draw that in a different color. So we have the post. And this is a standard NBA basketball rim. If I were to say it's 10 something off the ground, is that 10 inches or 10 feet? Well, if it was 10 inches, it would be very easy to dunk a basketball. (chuckles) Although it might be hard to fit the basketball in the rim because if the rim was, it might also be very, very small. That would be more of a basketball goal for an insect of some kind or for a very, very small mouse. For normal human beings, the standard height of a basketball goal is 10 feet. The one that they play with in the NBA. At your school, if you're a little bit younger, you might see a basketball goal that is six feet or eight feet or nine feet. But the standard ones that the professionals play with are 10 feet tall. Now let me give you some things, and I wanna decide whether it's better to measure them with feet or with inches. So let's say that I have a swimming pool, say I have a swimming pool right over here. And that is the pool. Would it be better to measure the length of this swimming pool in feet or in inches? Pause the video and think about that. Well, a swimming pool is fairly large. It is much larger than even a foot. So you'd think you'd want to measure it, if you had to choose between feet and inches, you would pick feet. And so this would be a situation where that pool might be, say, 75 feet long. Now, if you were measuring the length of a mouse, this is a mouse right over here. Not my best drawing of a mouse with its tail, its feet right over there. Would you be best off measuring it in feet or inches? A small mouse, a mouse that could fit in your hand. Well, that's going to be a good bit less than a foot. So it makes sense to measure that in inches. I've seen mice that might only be two or three inches long. So I'll leave you there. Hopefully that gives you a rough sense of what an inch is, what a foot is, how they're related to each other, and when you might use one or the other.