Metric conversion

A metric conversion chart will help you convert any metric unit to another with ease. Study the chart below carefully! You may not be familiar with it, but an understanding of it will make it easy to do conversion.

Using the chart below, we show the meaning of these symbols below:

  • The meaning of km is kilometer; k stands for kilo and m stands for meter.
  • The meaning of hm is hectometer; h stands for hecto and m stands for meter.
  • The meaning of dam is decameter; da stands for deca and m stands for meter.
  • The meaning of dm is decimeter; d stands for deci and m stands for meter.
  • The meaning of cm is centimeter; c stands for centi and m stands for meter.
  • The meaning of mm is millimeter; The m on the left stands for milli and the m on the right stands for meter.
Metric conversion

You can write dam either as decameter or dekameter. Both spellings are correct!

Here are some metric conversion tricks I learned while I was in middle school.

Example #1

Say for instance you want to convert 5 meters to millimeters.

Just put 5 in the column where it says meter(m). Then, going from left to right, add zeros until you get to millimeter(mm). The table below illustrates this.

5 meters to millimeters

5 meters = 5,000 millimeters or 5 m = 5000 mm

Example #2

Now, convert 4 dekameters to decimeters. Just put 4 in dekameter and add zeros until you get to decimeter.

4 decameters to decimeters

4 dekameters = 400 decimeters or 4 dam = 400 dm

Example #3

Convert 8 cm to meter. Put 8 in cm. Add 0 until, you get to meter.This time, you will go to the left because meter is on the left side of centimeter.

Just remember that when you go to the left, you need to use a decimal point.

8 centimeters to meter

8 centimeters = 0.08 meters or 8 cm = 0.08 m

Example #4

Convert 660 centimeters to meters.

Put 0 in cm, 6 in dm, and 6 in m. Again, you will go to the left since meter is on the left.

The answer is 6.60 meters

660 centimeters to meters

Example #5

What if the number is higher or equal to 10? For example, how would you convert 56 meters to millimeters?

Here, just make sure you put 6 (the unit place) in meter!

56 meters to millimeters

Then add zeros until you get to millimeters.

56 meters to millimeters

56 meters = 56000 millimeters or 56 m = 56000 mm

Example #6

Convert 758 millimeters to kilometers

Place 8 in millimeter and add zeros until you get to kilometers.

758 millimeters to kilometers

758 millimeters = 0.000758 kilometers or 758 mm = 0.000758 km

Another way to convert 660 centimeters to meters

660 centimeters is equal to how many meters?

1 meter = 100 centimeters

If it was 600 centimeters instead of 660, you could easily get the answer.

Notice that 100 + 100 + 100 + 100 + 100 + 100 = 600

So you will need six of the 100 centimeters and six 100 centimeters is 6 meters.

Now what's left?

60 centimeters.

This is a fraction of 100 centimeters or 60/100 = 0.6 and it is less than 1 meter.

The answer is then 6 + 0.6 = 6.6 meters.

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