One way to bring the metric system to life is to cast it in a mythical kingdom of kings, dragons, unicorns and other animals. Knowing that kings have dominion over the entire kingdom helps students remember that the prefix kilo is their highest prefix. Next to kings are humans (hecto), then dragons (deca), then unicorns (unit), dogs (deci), cats (centi) and finally mice (milli).
These prefixes are used with units of meters, grams and liters and are all based on powers of 10. And of course in the kingdom of metric, powers of 10 are the most amazing and sensible powers of all.