Saturday, March 2, 2013

Fractions, Decimals, Number Lines

     I have a student teacher this year.  It works out well for me because I have a sounding board to vent my frustrations on and someone to talk my way through and reason with on a standard such as Explain why a fraction a/b is equivalent to a fraction (n x a)/(n x b) by using visual fraction models, with attention to how the number and size of the parts differ even though the two fractions themselves are the same size.  I guess I have partner in crime, so to speak.  It does make me feel better when we both have a "deer in highlights" look on our faces.
     Although my student teacher, Mr. L., has not began his two week take over yet., he did prepare and teach a lesson in my classroom last week that I especially enjoyed.  I told him it was going in my lesson plan book for next year!  I like it so much I asked him if I could share it on my blog. 
     The lesson a wrap-up of making equivalent decimals and fractions using 10ths and 100ths, writing fractions in decimal notation, and making a number line to display the information.  He prepared an excellent lesson.  The final activity for the day was what he "Decimal 4 Square." 
     The only materials that were needed for this activity were a pencil, crayons, a piece of construction paper, and a hundredths decimal square.
     My kids folded the construction paper into 4ths, then label each section.  The kids were allowed to draw any picture in the decimal square they wanted, in any order they wanted.  They could skip spaces and begin the picture anywhere.  I love this since it made them stop and realize that decimal squares do not have to be always in rows and columns. 
     Next, they filled in the sections of the paper labeled Decimal and Fraction .  Finally, they made a number line and labeled it to show the information. 
     The only change I am going to make to this activity next year, is to have students label the number line with the fraction and decimal notation. 

This student actually included the fraction and decimal notation on her number line. :)

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