Our "fractionfest" continued Friday by taking our investigations a little deeper. We started our day by checking our their homework--how they divided the 5 x 5 grid into halves. I asked students who thought they had interesting explanations to share on the document camera.
We had all sorts of fun talking about refining our "math talk" so that anyone would be able to clearly understand our ideas. This is REALLY hard for my students, so I must remember to work in more modeling for them!
We then set out to really refine our thinking about what "1/2" really means. I asked students to take a little time to make a mini poster (a common learning strategy in our room) to show me "5 ways to represent 1/2". Represent is one of those words we try to use a lot--to make sure they understand how we can use word, numbers, symbols, and drawings to represent our thinking. Today I asked them to really try to think outside the box and come up with 5 DIFFERENT ways to represent 1/2. I wandered around looking at their ideas, hoping to get some information about where to head next in this unit. I noticed that most students were representing 1/2 by drawing different shapes ("wholes") and dividing into two equal pieces. There are so many more ways to represent fractions, so I know I need to find ways to get them exposed to them in the coming weeks.
This blog post is now a part of my comprehensive fraction unit available by clicking the image below. Hundreds of teachers have now used it to change the way they teach fractions!