Monday, April 8, 2013

Fraction Action and FREEBIES!!

Sorry I have been absent for the past few weeks.  Report cards, math data collection, and a whole lot of distractions at home and school have kept me away. 

I FINALLY remembered to take some pictures of my math lessons the last few math days!  We started our unit on Fractions and I have been having a blast teaching the concepts.   Our curriculum does an okay job teaching the concepts, but I found some really great extension lessons to help my students understand fractions to one half and one fourth.

 When introducing fractions to my students I ALWAYS introduce one half as one part of two.  I write the one, say, "part of" as I draw the line, and then write two.  I always represent one half as many ways as I can think of so they do not get stuck thinking that one half can only be represented with a square.  I also want my students to understand further by explaining and showing them that the top number is the number of colored parts and the number on the bottom is the number of colored + not colored parts.  You will be amazed at how everything just clicks once they understand this simple explanation!

We are using Math Trailblazers are our universal math curriculum and in this activity students cut out four shapes, folded them to create a line of symmetry, and colored one of the equal parts.  Once the were finished they glued their shapes on a piece of butcher paper.  I emphasized that to them that the shapes did not always need to be places flat side down.  My shape is the blue triangle in the upper left corner and when I asked them if this is one half (point down) some replied, NO.  This told me I need to address properties of shapes once again ( flips, slides, and rotations).

Once we talked about equal parts students went back to cut out the same shapes only this time they made their shapes showing unequal parts not halves.  I challenged them to try to make unequal parts that they think no one else will make.  They had a blast with this activity.
The next day we repeated the activity only talking about one part of four, or one fourth.  At this point of the lesson I only referred to the fractions as one equal part of four.  Once again I really want them to understand the meaning of a fraction instead of just memorizing the name of the fraction names.

This first FREEBIE extension lesson I found by Chrissy Beltran Here.  I just bought mini m&ms and gave everyone a plastic spoonful.  They all got about 25 candies and a small snack as a reward for finishing.  I bought minis because on of my students has diabetes and the smaller candy portion helps regulate her blood sugar better.
Students sort their m&ms into like colors, tally, and total their colors.  On the back of this page they will write the fractional part of each color m&m and the total number of candies.

I also created my own Fraction Action FREEBIE that you can use with m & m candies Here
I created this activity as another interactive way for students to learn more about fractions in an engaging way.  I have them sorting, writing the parts, writing the fraction, illustrating the fractions, drawing the fractional parts, and writing the fraction.  Use this one page at a time or all together in a packet.

This next extension lesson is simple, but I like it because students struggle drawing equal parts themselves.  This activity was created by Paula Prince Here.  I was shocked at how well my students did on this activity. 

This is another great activity by The Teacher Wife Here.  Students will cut out the fraction pieces and then glue them under the correct fraction.  At this point of the unit I could start introducing the names of the fractions because I feel they understand the meaning of fractional parts.  Again, I thought they my students did so well!  We were on day 4 of fractions when I gave them this activity.

Finally I just have to share my latest obsession.  I have the program Photoshop Elements 11 and did not know just how useful it can be for a Teachers pay Teachers seller.  I learned how create background designs and since I am new at this part of TpT I am posting my favorite background design to see how you all like it.  This TP Design link Here.  I only downloaded three different colors and I have all primary colored backgrounds with the rainbow dots, but I wanted to see what kind of feedback I will get before posting more.  My latest learning is how to create borders.  I am very particular with my backgrounds and will post them as soon as I get at least 10 I like created. 

Have you seen the Apple app iFont Maker?  IT IS WONDERFUL!!   You can create fonts in your own handwriting and then download them on your computer and then to your products!  I have quite a few and will again post them once I get 10 that I like well enough to use in my own products!  Here is the thumbnail I created to use once I get this going:

Well that is all for this posting!  Have a great week!

Tina Parker

1 comment:

  1. I just saw that you shared my M&M freebie! Thanks for sharing this product! I'm glad you were able to use it in your classroom!

    Buzzing with Ms. B