During this lesson students will investigate equivalent fractions using fraction piece models to identify equivalent fractions. They will use the findings from their investigation to discern an algorithm for determining equivalent fractions.
To begin this lesson students will play a fraction game in groups as they compete against the teacher. Each group or table of students is given a deck of cards with the face cards removed. The students shuffle their cards and then flip four cards into the center of their table. I also have a deck of cards and do the same.
The object of the game is create the biggest fraction possible using two of the cards flipped. The students will score a point if their fraction is bigger than mine. For each flip the students are given about a minute to decide what fraction to create.
After a several rounds I stop play and discuss strategies that students used during the game.
In order to practice creating and naming equivalent fractions students use their fraction pieces set to create as many equivalent fractions as possible(MP 4). The students use the pieces to create models of equivalent fractions and then record equivalences on their whiteboard.
I allow the students 15 minutes or so to investigate equivalences while I circulate the room and assist struggling students.
To wrap up this activity I draw attention to one of our ‘I can’ statements of the unit. I can create and identify equivalent fractions.
Let’s see if we can look for some patterns in our equivalent fractions. Who can give me an example of equivalent fractions?
I display several pairs of fractions and then ask students to take some time to observe the fractions and see if they can identify any patterns they see between the fractions. The goal is that students are able to identify that the numerator and denominator and multiplied by the same factor(MP 8). Basically, we are looking for the equivalent fraction algorithm.
I ask some probing questions if students are struggling at uncovering the algorithm but I want them to see it without me pointing it out to them.