3rd Grade Math Help: Finding the Volume of Boxes

Finding the volume of a box is one of the first geometry lessons you will see in school. Here are some practice problems and tips to make it easier to find the volume of boxes.

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Learning About Volume

The Volume Equation

It's important to understand what volume is before trying to find answers to volume equations. Volume is the amount of space taken up by an object. So in a box, the volume tells you exactly how much room there is to put things in, or how many cubes could fit inside the closed box. To find the volume, multiply the width by the depth by the height (V = wdh).

Practice at Home

You can find the volume of various-sized boxes using a measuring tape, a pencil and a scrap of paper. Find the height by measuring how tall the box is. Then find the width and depth by measuring how wide it is on either side. Multiply the three numbers together to find the volume. Here are some practice problems:

Volume Problems

  1. w = 4, d = 6, l = 12
  2. w = 5, d = 2, l = 10
  3. w = 9, d = 1, l = 13
  4. w = 8, d = 3, l = 13
  5. w = 15, d = 6, l = 20


  1. v = 288
  2. v = 100
  3. v = 117
  4. v = 312
  5. v = 1,800

Related Math Terms

Volume Versus Capacity

You may be learning a term called capacity, which is similar to volume. Understanding the difference between the two may help you when it comes time for tests or homework. Capacity is the amount of liquid that can fit into a given object, while volume is the amount of space taken up by the object itself.

A jelly jar, for example, might have a capacity of one pint, meaning you can pour one pint of jelly into it without having any fall out. The volume of the jar would be the amount of physical space taken up by the glass of the jar. Usually you will use volume for measuring solids and capacity for measuring liquids.


Area is the surface space taken up by an object. To find the area of a square, multiply length by width. So once you find the area, you can take that number and multiply it by the depth of the square to find the volume.


The perimeter is the distance around the outside of the object. With squares, you can calculate the perimeter by adding two times the length plus two times the height (P = 2l + 2h).

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