Equivalent And Comparing Fractions

Grade Levels: 4 - 6

  • Students will be able to define the terms: fraction, numerator, and denominator.
  • Students will be able to write a fraction which tells what part of a region is shaded.
  • Students will be able to name the numerator and denominator of a fraction.
  • Students will identify equivalent fractions.
  • Students will be able to write a fraction in lowest terms.
  • Students will be able to compare fractions.
  • Rectangular pieces of paper
  • Chalkboard
  • Chalk
  • Facsimile of a pizza
  • Numbers 2,4,1,3 on separate slips of paper
  1. Write the terms: fraction, numerator, and denominator on the board.
  2. Go over each term and each definition.
  3. Display the facsimile of a pizza, divided into 8 parts. The pizza is going to be divided at a mock family meal.
  4. Write the numbers 2,4,1,3 on separate pieces of paper. Have four students each select one slip of paper.
  5. Give each student the number of pieces of pizza indicated on his or her slip of paper.
  6. Ask the class how much each person received in both decimals and percent.
  7. Provide each student with a piece of rectangular paper.
  8. Fold your piece of paper in half. After you have folded the paper in half, instruct the students to do the same.
  9. Explain that a fraction is a part of a whole. You have divided a whole piece of paper into two equal parts.
  10. The students will color one of the two equal parts.
  11. Ask a student to write 1/2 on the board to show that one out of the two equal parts is now shaded.
  12. Introduce the vocabulary words numerator and denominator. The numerator is the number of parts shaded and the denominator is the total number of equal parts.
  13. For those students who have difficulty remembering which is the numerator and which is the denominator, try this memory association technique - In a fraction, one number is UP above the line and one is DOWN below the line. Numerator has a "u" in it and so does up; denominator begins with "d" and so does down.
  14. Repeat the same activity with pieces of paper, demonstrating 1/4, 3/4, 1/3, 2/3, 1/8.
  15. Each time, a student should write the fraction on the board and identify the numerator and the denominator.
  16. Ask students to fold a rectangular sheet of paper in half and color one of the two equal parts. Ask what fraction of the paper is colored (1/2).
  17. Now have them refold the same paper and then fold it in half once again. Unfold.
  18. How many equal parts now?(4) What fraction is shaded (2/4 or 1/2) Since the amount of shading has not changed, this means that fraction 1/2 = 2/4. T
  19. Tell students that 1/2 and 2/4 are two names for the same amount. Therefore, they are equivalent.
  20. Now have students refold the papers and then fold in half a third time.Unfold. What new fraction have they found that is equivalent to 1/2 and 2/4? (4/8) These three fractions name the same amount.
  21. Write all of the factors of 24 and 100 on the board. Explain why 24/100,12/50, 6/25 are equivalent fractions. They are the same fractions, only the names change, not the value.
  22. A fraction is in lowest terms when the numerator and denominator only have the number 1 as a common factor.
  23. Write the terms unlike fractions and like fractions on the board, explain the definitions. Now, go over the term least common denominator and explain.

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