Saturday, May 26, 2012

Fraction Fanatic

So I know I've posted about fractions before, and the stations I used to work with the kids and develop the concept. 
But I feel the need to spend more time here.
Why? This conversation:
Student: "Oooo, I know one third is less than two twos because two twos are one whole!"
Me: "Two twos?" hoping the kid would see his error and say two halves
Student: "Oh, sorry. Two twoths."
However, I am celebrating that he knew two twoths make one whole. That's a pretty good start.
That's not the only reason I'm still writing about fractions. This time, we had to go a step (or several) further. We had to find equivalent fractions and compare them using pictures or models. I'm not sure why, but I kind of love finding equivalent fractions. Comparing them, though, is not fun. I'm not sure why this is such a difficult concept, when the kids are using models! But it always is, and I kind of hate it. 
First, we made an equivalent fractions foldable to identify the fractions equivalent to 1/2. 

*Found in my More Furry Friends Fractions Pack!
Could also be done with any other fraction to record equivalent fractions.

To force help myself to like comparing a little better, I came up with these stations and put together a Equivalent and Comparing Fractions Pack, with a theme that has been pretty popular: furry things. This is a long one, but it has pictures, which helps. And, as you are so very nice, there is a freebie waiting for you as well.
Cuisenaire Rods

At my Guided Reading table, I worked with students to identify fractional parts of different-sized wholes using Cuisenaire Rods. They're an interesting way to have conversations about half being half, and representing a relationship between the part and whole of something, regardless of the size of the object. However, some halves are larger than others, if they object is larger. 
In case you're interested in reading about cuisenaire rods, this page has some general information and some activities as well.

Comparing Fractions with Pictures
Students used this mat to compare fractions that were circles and rectangles. They moved the cardstock symbols on the brads to make =, >, and <. Then they recorded it on their recording sheets. *Found in my More Furry Friends Fractions Pack!

Comparing Written Fractions

At another station, students compared the written fractions using manipulatives. They had to build each fraction pair and compare. Then they recorded the fractions. *Found in my More Furry Friends Fractions Pack!

Comparing Fractions Task Cards

Students drew a card from the stack and built the two fractions described using their manipulatives. They recorded them and compared them. *Found in my More Furry Friends Fractions Pack!

Equivalent Fractions Memory Game
Students played memory with the cards (found on SuperTeacher Worksheets) and made matches of equivalent fractions. This is the only station they didn't have a recording sheet for.

Equivalent Fractions & Comparing Fractions in Textbook

And last but not least (except for possibly least exciting) was a page from the textbook. Students compared fractions and found equivalent fractions using their fraction manipulatives. 

Overall, students gained an understanding of comparing and equivalent fractions, but they're still developing in their mastery. Different-sized wholes are still confusing, so we're attacking that again tomorrow!

And if you liked some of these activities and want to do them with your own kids, grab the pack at TPT:

Freebie for you! Grab it at TPT!
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  1. Fractions really can be a difficult one for students!! Love the hands on centers.

  2. Thanks for sharing all your great ideas for fractions!!

    Learning Is Something to Treasure

  3. Looks fantastic! Great job! :)

  4. What great ideas! I love how many DIFFERENT ways your students were using the information!

    Luckeyfrog's Lilypad

  5. I love all your different ideas. I struggle to teach fractions :/ blah. I guess I need to get more comfortable with it since I'm looping with my students next year. Eeeek. Thanks for all the great resources!!

    Dirty Hands and Lesson Plans

  6. Two twoths was awesome. I did fractions as our last chapter in first grade math, and we were working on just unit fractions. I tried to teach them how to really say "fifths" instead of "fiths" or however you normally would lazily say it. So we sounded it out... f-i-f-th-s. It was funny watching them try to put it all together into a word!!

    Marvelous Multiagers!

  7. I am still cracking up over two twoths haha! Great resources! Makes me a little sad that I probably won't be teaching math next year.

    Check out my new blog- I am giving away a $25 gc to Target to celebrate!

  8. great job ..
    i just want to share with u about comparing fraction on this site,,


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