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Saturday, November 19, 2011

What Common Referents Should Students Understand in Order to See the Relationships between Fractions, Decimals, and Percents?

Since I've been creating all of these fraction, decimal, and percent games recently, I began to think about this question:

What basic fractional measures should all students be able to picture in their minds so that they can compare different fractions, decimals, and percents?

Well, I like to think about a measuring cup set to help me answer that question.
If a student can compare and visualize: 1 whole, 3/4,  2/3, ½, 1/3, and ¼ , then they can use this information to compare other quantities.  For example, if I was trying to make sense out of 5/8, I would think:
4/8 is the same as 1/2
5/8 is a little more than 4/8 or 1/2
So 5/8 is a bit more than 1/2 or 50% or .5
I bet it is about 60% or .6 something (actual = .625 or 62%)
Now... compare 5/8 and .42.  Could you do it?
P.S. This is the perfect reason why you should have your children cooking and measuring with you in the kitchen... building number sense!

1 comment :

  1. Hi Deborah:

    Since today's kiddos don't cook, build or sew (unless there's a video game on those topics that I haven't seen!) their real-life referents are becoming lost. I am astonished every year when they cannot use a ruler! Thanks for making an effort to "carry on." Your District is LUCKY to have you!
    And thanks for always having something on your blog that makes me think. I love to visit!

    Finding JOY in 6th Grade


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