Reflection: Checks for Understanding Simplifying Fractions - Section 3: Guided Practice


I have found that students learn to use rich, precise language when it is authentically incorporated into the classroom dialogue.  This approach requires visual prompts, and definitions are helpful resources after the terms have been learned and adopted.

I did not specifically say that we are going to be learning the terminology common factor today. This is intentional, because I want the students to be learning the language as they are learning the concepts.  I also believe that hearing them express thinking using their own words is a more meaningful way for me to assess their understanding.  

I use the terminology common factors throughout the lesson.  As I circulate, I read students' explanations and find that without officially using the term they can still communicate their thinking.  

One student wrote, "I know this fraction is in simplest form, because when I think about all the numbers that can fit into both of these parts, I can see that that there are no numbers that I can divide both the numerator and denominator by".  

At this point, I asked him if "common factor" could be used in this explanation.  He reworded his thought and showed appreciation for the new terms.  Since this terminology now has meaning, he is more likely to use it in his everyday language than if it were merely written on a vocabulary list in his notebook.

  Building a strong math vocabulary
  Checks for Understanding: Building a strong math vocabulary
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Simplifying Fractions

Unit 2: Adding and Subtracting Fractions
Lesson 4 of 11

Objective: SWBAT simplify fractions to the simplest form.

Big Idea: This lesson will help students recognize when fractions are in simplest form.

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11 teachers like this lesson
Math, Fractions, simplest form, equivalent fractions, Critical Area
  55 minutes
screen shot 2014 04 17 at 10 09 28 am
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