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# A Math lesson on Comparing Fractions

Subject:

Math

Grades:

4, 5

A FRACTION OF AN EGG

OBJECTIVES:

Process: OBSERVlNG, comparing

Content: Comparing fractions with numerators of one; using less than or greater than

RELATION TO KEY SKILLS:

MA, Level IV, Objective (0)A – 5

MA, Level V, Objective (0)A – 5

MA, Level VI, Objective (0)A – 4

CONTEXT:

Group size: 5 Grade level: 4 – 5

PREREQUISITE:

Know the terms numerator and denominator; know that when you have 1/3 of an object, the object could be grouped in 3 equal parts.

MATERIALS PER GROUP:

pencils; egg cartons (minimum of 1 per person); about 16 marbles; 1 paper cup to hold marbles; 1 set of index cards marked (1/2, 1/3, 1/4, 1/6, and 1/12 on separate cards); worksheets (appendix)

PROCEDURE:

1. Divide students into groups of 5. Each group receives 5 egg cartons, at least 16 marbles, and 1 set of cards. (If class does not divide evenly into groups of 5, any smaller size group will do. Each group still needs 5 cartons and at least 16 marbles.)

2. Each student receives one carton with which to work. (In smaller groups, some students would have 2 or more cartons.)

3. Have the first student in each group put one marble in each space of his/her carton until 1/2 of the carton is filled. (Others in group may help if needed.) Place 1/2 card by carton.

4. Have second student in each group put one marble in each space of his/her carton until 1/3 of the carton is filled. (Others in group may help if needed. Keep the marbles in each carton.) Place 1/3 card by carton.

5. Continue as in steps 3 and 4, with third student making 1/4, fourth student making 1/6, and fifth

student making 1/12.

6. Distribute worksheet 1. Have students fill in the table, us ing the marbles that are in the cartons.

7. Have each group discuss and come to a conclusion (and write the conclusion) about the questions on worksheet 1.

8. Let students from different groups share their findings. Use findings to answer the following questions: "Would 1/3 be less than or greater than 1/6?"; "Would 1/2 be less than or greater than 1/47

9. Collect supplies.

10. Distribute worksheet 2 for individual practice and evaluation.

EXTENSTIONS AND/OR ADAPTATIONS:

Have students convert fractions to a common denominator (12th). Fractions could then be added.

CONTENT BACKGROUND:

Unlike whole numbers, as the denominator of a traction increases, the size of the fraction decreases.

APPENDIX:

1. A Fraction Of An Egg Worksheet 1

2. A Fraction Of An Egg Worksheet 2

Source: KSAM Math Activities (Summer 1986) Volume 4

A FRACTION OF AN EGG WORKSHEET 1

Name:

Number of spaces used to make the fractions:

Fraction Spaces Used 1/12 1/6 1/4 1/3 1/2

What do you notice about the numerators of the fractions?

Now look at the denominators and the number of spaces used. How do the size of the denominators and the number of spaces relate to each other?

Look at the egg cartons. Remember that the more spaces that are filled, the larger the fraction. Combining all of this together, what happens to the size of the fraction as the denominator gets larger?

A FRACTION OF AN EGG WORKSHEET 2

Name:

Decide if the first fraction is less than or greater than the second.

Circle

the correct response (less than or greater than).

Example:

1/2 is less than / greater than 1/3.

1. 1/7 is less than / greater than 1/4

2. 1/6 is less than / greater than 1/9

3. 1/3 is less than / greater than 1/20

4. 1/11 is less than / greater than 1/34

5. 1/14 is less than / greater than 1/10

6. 1/10 is less than / greater than 1/4

7. 1/12 is less than / greater than

8. 1/17 is less than / greater than 1/22

9. 1/8 is less than / greater than 1/3.

10. 1/14 is less than / greater than 1/6.