Reflection: Student Led Inquiry Introduction to Dividing Whole Numbers by Fractions - Section 3: Guided Practice


During the guided practice portion of this lesson, a student raised his hand to ask "Are there properties when you are dividing fractions?"  It took me a minute of wait time to process what he was trying to ask.  Then, another student chimed in and said, "I am wondering the same thing, does it matter which fraction you keep and which one you flip?"

I can't express how rewarding it is when students' questioning leads the discussion in places I could have never planned.  These students generated a discussion about properties of multiplication and division of whole numbers and how these properties are still the same properties when working with fractions.  

There is a commutative property of multiplication, so 1/3 x 3 is the same as 3 x 1/3. In division, we know this isn't true.  20 divide by 5 is different from 5 divided by 20.  After this discussion, I write to problems on the board 1/4 divided by 2 and 2 divided by 1/4.  We "Keep, Change, Flip" and solve each together.  To prove that what is true with whole numbers and division is still true with fractions. 

I praise the students for asking these great questions, and explain that we will work with dividing fractions by whole numbers this year as well.  However, for the remainder of the lesson, we will work with modeling a whole number divided by a fraction.

  Are there properties for dividing with fractions?
  Student Led Inquiry: Are there properties for dividing with fractions?
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Introduction to Dividing Whole Numbers by Fractions

Unit 4: Multiplying and Dividing Fractions
Lesson 10 of 13

Objective: SWBAT model the process of dividing a whole number by a fraction.

Big Idea: Students learn a rap song to help them divide with fractions.

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20 teachers like this lesson
Math, modeling, Fractions, Number Sense and Operations, dividing, Critical Area
  60 minutes
screen shot 2014 04 12 at 5 17 08 pm
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