Use metric

You influence others through your conversation. If you use metric quantities in everyday life rather than always converting back to imperial, you help others to understand metric values. You may even embolden others to “talk metric”. Don’t be afraid to use metric units in everyday conversations – after all, it is logical and easy. Phrases like ‘I’ve lost three kilograms in a month’, ‘my child’s grown six centimetres in the last year’, and ‘it happened just metres from where we were standing’ show examples of the use of straightforward metric units which most people will understand. Most people are already comfortable using metric units, e.g. a litre of orange juice or wine, 35 mm film, fabric by the metre and athletics in hundreds of metres.

If you are a parent, ensure that you discuss everyday measurements with your children in metric. This will help reinforce what they are learning at school. Unfortunately this may be undermined by the dominance of imperial in the media. But don’t be intimidated, helping children to understand metric measurement will help their maths, geography as well as science.

Equip yourself with metric measuring equipment. Switch your bathroom scales to kilograms, get yourself a metric tape measure and try to cook with metric measures. If you feel unfamiliar with using metric try our practical help section. Once you have been used to measuring in metric for a while, you will find it easier than imperial – especially if you need to calculate something.