• best teaching practices
• # Less than, Equal to, or More than ½

Now that students have had plenty of practice with comparing fractions to a half, this part is just building upon that same foundation!

## Hands On with Fraction Bars

Building upon what students know, they are now ready to compare a fraction to a half! In order to help students understand this in a little more depth, start with a quick hands on activity.

Activity: Less than, Equal to, or More than ½

– Work with their partners to figure out if the specific fraction is more, less, or equal to 1/2

“…. is less than, equal to, or more than ½ because …. is equivalent to ½ and …. is less than, equal to, or more than ….

7/12 is more than 1/2, because 6/12 is equivalent to 1/2, and 7/12 is more than 6/12”

What I’ve seen that has helped students tremendously is the verbal communication part of this. Whatever activity you choose to do to help with practice, make sure they are verbalizing their thinking. Using the sentence stem that has been provided!

## Moving away from Fraction Blocks

Comparing Fraction half to a fraction with an even denominator

1. Total of 24 pieces
2. Take half of 24 (divide by 2)
3. There are 12 in each half
4. If there are a total of 24 pieces, one half is equal to 12/24
5. 12/24 is less than 1/2 because 12/24 is = 1/2 and 17 pieces is more than 12 pieces.

Activity: Card Talk. Around the World.
“I can compare fractions to a 1/2
1) Find an empty desk and flip over the card.
2) Both partners find the fraction half (look at the denominator and find half of the denominator). Discuss your fraction halves – if you need, use your fraction strips.
3) Compare the fraction to a 1/2 verbally.
5) Flip the card face down and find a different empty desk.

Comparing Fraction half to a fraction with an odd denominator

Review: when fractions have a common numerator, they have the same number of pieces, so you have to look at the denominator, the size of the piece.

Comparing 4/7 to a 1/2

1) You can’t take half of sevenths because it is an odd number.
2) Make a fraction that is equivalent to a half with the same numerator. 4/8 is equivalent to 1/2
3) Use the skill of comparing fractions with a common numerator by looking at the denominator. They both have four pieces so look at the denominator, the size of the piece. Sevenths is larger than eights.
4) Make the final comparison with the half.

4/7 is more than 1/2, because 4/8 is equivalent to 1/2, and sevenths is larger than eighths.

Activity: Card Talk. Around the World.

1) Find an empty desk and flip over the card.
2) Both partners find the fraction half (look at the denominator and find half of the denominator). Discuss your fraction halves – if you need, use your fraction strips.
3) Compare the fraction to a ½ verbally.
5) Flip the card face down and find a different empty desk.

Practice, Practice, Practice, Practice, Practice!
What has helped with this tremendously is providing sentence stems for students to refer back to!

Honestly, if you take the time to break fractions down to where students are building a good foundation with ample amounts of practice, your students WILL ROCK FRACTIONS! My students have had more confidence with fractions than ever before and the 5th grade teachers have come to me saying they’ve never had an easier time teaching fractions. Break it down, make it fun, and have students conversing!

This is a part of our fraction series. Check out these other posts!
– http://mustardseedteaching.com/fractions-introduction/
– http://mustardseedteaching.com/pizza-fractions-unit-fractions/
– http://mustardseedteaching.com/comparing-fractions-with-common-denominators-common-numerators/
– http://mustardseedteaching.com/making-half/

• best teaching practices
• # Making Half

Finding Half Using Fraction Bars Before diving into equivalent fractions, I have found that letting students explore by building ½ with fraction bars helps build a foundation for equivalent fractions. FREEBIE ACTIVITY CLICK HERE After this simple hands on activity, students will understand – The denominator needs to be an EVEN number in order to take half – There […]

• building conceptual understanding
• # Comparing Fractions with Common Denominators & Common Numerators

If students understand what a fraction is and have a good understanding of comparing unit fractions, comparing fractions with a common denominator and numerator will be a confidence booster! Check out these previous posts: Fractions Introduction Unit Fractions Like I’ve said in my previous post, first, I get students to practice by using fraction bars […]

• building conceptual understanding
• # Pizza Fractions – Unit Fractions

I always start with this activity as a foundation for comparing unit fractions. Every year, this activity is a huge hit with my students! Fraction Pizza Activity: Team Challenge Group students into groups of 4 and put the timer on for 30 minutes. 1) Work with your group to make pizzas 2) Everyone will be assigned […]

• building conceptual understanding
• # Multiplying Decimals | Why does it get smaller?

We were doing a lesson on multiplying decimals with models when a student asked a question: “Why does our answer get smaller if we’re multiplying?” Great question! This makes us stop and think “How are we teaching the basic understanding of multiplication?” Is it right for us to be saying ‘the number gets larger when we […]

• best teaching practices
• # Decimal Investigation

Building a strong understanding of how our base ten system works is always so important. Taking the time to help students understand this will help with ‘regrouping’ when it comes to adding, subtracting, multiplying, and dividing – it’s worth the time! Ones – Tenths – Hundredths – Thousandths  One whole 1.00 One whole is […]

• best teaching practices
• # Dividing Decimals with Models

Aubrey’s mom is planning to make her famous orange limeade and asks Aubrey to go to the store. Aubrey ended up buying 3 oranges for a total of \$2.67. How much does each orange cost? “What is division?” Division is when you take the total of something and split it up equally. #1 Make the model: 2 wholes / […]