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A Fraction of the Possibilities

Overview | Activities

Overview:

It is easy to underestimate the importance of fractions, decimals, percentages (and their intersections) in our everyday life. Sure, most people can handle simple computations that require use of fractions like 1/2 , 1/4 or percentages like 100% or 50%, but what happens when you are asked to use a series of these values or more complicated numbers instead? This lesson reviews the conversion of fractions to decimals, helps develop strategies to compare fractions and provides the basis for doing complex calculations using ratio techniques similar to the construction of fractions. It can be done as a self-directed lesson or as a group lesson.

Subject Matter: Mathematics

Learning Objectives:

Student will be able to:
• represent fractional quantities in various ways by understanding and using rational and irrational numbers

• list fractions according to value order

• develop ratio expressions for equivalent numbers or measures by applying the properties of real numbers to various subsets of numbers
Standards:

National Council of Teachers of Math (Intermediate level)
http://standards.nctm.org/document/chapter6/numb.htm

• Students should compare and order fractions, decimals and percents efficiently and find their approximate locations on a number line.
• Students should work flexibly with fractions, decimals and percents to solve problems.
National Council of Teachers of Math (Intermediate level)
http://www.emsc.nysed.gov/ciai/mst/pub/mststa3.pdf

• Students use number sense and numeration to develop an understanding of the multiple uses of numbers in the real world, the use of numbers to communicate mathematically, and the use of numbers in the development of mathematical ideas.
Media components:

Melvin Makes a Match (interactive equivalent fractions game)
http://pbskids.org/cyberchase/games/equivalentfractions/equivalentfractions.html
The Cyberchase companion Web site has many interactive games to reinforce the skills discussed on the television program. Aligned with best practices in math, science and technology, students can build a variety of skills while playing these games. This game becomes increasingly more difficult as players complete each round; it further develops a number sense by demonstrating how equivalent fractions can be represented numerically and graphically.

Saloon snap game (Shockwave required)
http://www.bbc.co.uk/education/mathsfile/shockwave/games/saloonsnap.html
This 3-level game of draw matches your wit against Fast Fingers Malcolm. Hit the bell when the numbers being compared are equivalent. You will compare fractions to decimals and percents in this quick game. If you need help, there is a link to tips that will help you beat the challenger. Printable versions are also available online.

Saloon snap key ideas: Conversion
http://www.bbc.co.uk/education/mathsfile/shockwave/key/snapkey.html
Use this companion page to the Saloon Snap game to help review the steps needed to convert fractions to decimals, decimals to fractions, percentages to fractions and all of the combinations between the three forms.

GED Connect Math Practice Test #1 (Registration required)
One of the goals of this lesson is to prepare students for the kinds of math they will be expected to know on the GED. This web-based practice test will allow you to work at your own pace while also getting accuracy feedback. Registration is required before accessing the test but the investment of time needed to register for this free site is well worth the resources it provides.

Supplies:

• Various containers of household product/product labels (5)
• Calculator (optional)
• Scrap paper
• Pencil

Handouts
Prep for Teachers
• Register for the GED Connect Web-based service.