Reflection: Connection to Prior Knowledge Fractions: Reviewing the Basics - Section 4: Fun with Fractions Game


This game really pushed the students to think and talk about fractions.  I thought it was going to be a quick simple exercise to get the students back into "fractions mode".  It took much longer than I anticipated and the students were engaged in great discussion throughout the entire game. 

At first, I doubted the time guidelines.  I was glad that I stuck by them.  One adjustment I made was the scoring.  I gave each team 3/4 of a point when they got the correct answer. I wanted to bring more fractions into the game!

One thing that really struck me about the discussions that students had in the game was the approaches students took to explain their thoughts.  The students who often get the answers correct used numbers to explain their thinking.  For example, they changed fractions with unlike denominators to have common denominators right away, then they made decisions to answer questions based on the new fractions.  Other students were able to reason through their thoughts and explain their thinking using pictures and reasoning, rather than an algorithm. Because of the game's rules, I was able to hear them thinking out loud, but so was the other team.  

Ex:  One student explained that 3/4 was more than 3/8 because in both cases, there are 3 parts, but the 4ths have larger pieces.  Another student changed the 3/4 to 6/8 and explained that there are 3 more 8ths in 3/4 than there are in 3/8.  

Ex: At one point, a team struggled with adding 2/3 and 1/5.  They knew they needed common denominators and were really collaborating about how to "make the 3 into a 5 or the 5 into a 3". Eventually, at the end of the time, they used estimation to give an approximate answer.  Although they did not get it right, this group learned from the experience.  When the second team changed both 3 and 5 to a common denominator of 15, the students in the first group had a visible "Ah ha" moment.  They were given time to share this with the class. 

I will keep this experience in mind as we move through the topic. 

  Warm up with a game
  Connection to Prior Knowledge: Warm Up With A Game
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Fractions: Reviewing the Basics

Unit 2: Adding and Subtracting Fractions
Lesson 1 of 11

Objective: SWBAT demonstrate the depth and breadth of their fractional knowledge and skills using models, pictures, or symbols.

Big Idea: Students have fun with fractions as they connect with prior knowledge of equivalent / simplify / estimation of solutions.

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28 teachers like this lesson
Math, Fractions, Critical Area
  60 minutes
screen shot 2014 02 11 at 4 29 22 pm
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