## Summary of metric units of distance

Kilometer | Meter | Centimeter | Millimeter |
---|---|---|---|

$\goldD1$ | $1000$ | $100{,}000$ | $1{,}000{,}000$ |

$\dfrac{1}{1000}$ | $\goldD1$ | $100$ | $1000$ |

$\dfrac{1}{100{,}000}$ | $\dfrac{1}{100}$ | $\goldD1$ | $10$ |

## What is distance?

Distance measures length. For example, the distance of a road is how long the road is.

In the metric system of measurement, the most common units of distance are millimeters, centimeters, meters, and kilometers.

### How big are metric units of distance?

A paper clip is about $1$

**millimeter**thick.A fingernail is about $1$

**centimeter**wide.The length of a guitar is about $1$

**meter**.A

**kilometer**is equal to $1000$ meters. It is a little over half of a mile.*Want to learn more about metric units of distance? Check out this video.*

## Converting larger units to smaller units

$1 \text{ centimeter} = \greenD{10}\text{ millimeters}$

$1 \text{ meter} = \greenD{100}\text{ centimeters}$

$1 \text{ meter} = \greenD{1,000}\text{ millimeters}$

$1 \text{ kilometer} = \greenD{1,000}\text{ meters}$

$1 \text{ meter} = \greenD{100}\text{ centimeters}$

$1 \text{ meter} = \greenD{1,000}\text{ millimeters}$

$1 \text{ kilometer} = \greenD{1,000}\text{ meters}$

To convert larger units to smaller units we multiply the number of larger units by the green conversion factor for the appropriate smaller units.

**Example: Converting meters to centimeters:**

$1 \text{ meter} = \greenD{100}\text{ centimeters}$

$\blueD{11} \text{ meters} = \blueD{11}\times \greenD{100}=\blueD{11}\greenD{00}\text{ centimeters}$

$\blueD{11} \text{ meters} = \blueD{11}\times \greenD{100}=\blueD{11}\greenD{00}\text{ centimeters}$

## Converting smaller units to larger units

To convert smaller units to larger units we divide the number of smaller units by the purple conversion factor for the appropriate larger units.

**Example: Converting meters to kilometers:**

*Want to learn more about converting between metric units of distance? Check out this video.*

## Practice set 2: Converting distance units

*Want to try more problems like this? Check out these exercises:*

Convert larger units to smaller units

Converting between units