Sunday, December 29, 2013

Modeling Multiplication of Fractions

It sure feels like I have been writing about fractions like CRAZY~CRAZY, but we spend almost all of 2nd quarter and part of 3rd quarter learning fraction concepts. Are you looking for a way to launch your unit on multiplying fractions (read-elicit some prior knowledge and a reality check on where students are in their fraction understanding?) I created these task cards to do just that with my students. I wanted to focus on representing situations/word problems with models and equations. I also incorporated the opposite--representing models and creating word problems. It was interesting to see my students try to color the fraction models to represent the word problems.

Did I mention that these cards grew from the fact that I was pretty sure that many of my high-achieving students could solve the equations for multiplying fractions, but I was not sure that they truly understood what they were doing or why you would multiply a fraction by a fraction or a fraction by a whole number. With these cards, students were exposed to examples, had to represent what it meant on a picture, and had to create their own situations/word problems.

I included 16 task cards each for multiplying fractions times a whole number and fractions times a fraction. 8 of the cards in each set focus on modeling a word problem and 8 of the cards focus on writing a word problem and equation to represent a model.
 Multiplying Fractions with Models Task Cards 5NF
 Multiplying Fractions by Fractions and Fractions by Whole Number Task Cards
The student answer sheets for these task cards include all parts students are to complete (IE-models, equations, written word problems, etc).
I also made a version of the task cards that are one to a page so that you can show them on the smart board. This is actually how I used the problems to launch the lesson (students had their recording sheets and I displayed the cards on the board so that we could "math talk" about what we were thinking and share our representations.) After day 1, students worked on the task cards independently. These task cards fit 4th and 5th grade Common Core standards for fractions.
Have you checked out my other recent math posts? Here's a run-down: 
Fractions Fractions Fractions  (differentiation strategies and subtracting fractions with regrouping)
Division with Fractional Parts (Multistep and CHALLENGING!)

You can check out all of my fractions products HERE @ TPT

Oh yeah, I also made an "Everything Fractions" pinterest board, if you want to follow along. I've already pinned some goodies, especially websites for integrating technology in math, but I will keep pinning every time I see a great fraction idea.

I'm cooking up one more idea for an interactive fraction lesson that I hope I can make work...

Thanks for stopping by!

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