Apr 8, 2008

Whole and Half

I started the kids on the road to fractions yesterday. :)
To begin, I pulled out their Easter erasures. I had them take turns while the other one watched. This exposes them to the concept twice and I can see what each of them is able to express on their own with no immediate "copy-catting".
First, I had them count how many erasures there were. 4. Then how many green butterfly erasures. 2. Then how many purple ones. 2. Then I asked if there were more green or more purple butterflies? There was the same number. So I pointed out that there were two equal groups and that made 1 half. One half of the erasures were purple and one half of the erasures were green. Then we counted and sorted the butterflies until they could easily answer the questions with "1 half". Then I showed them the concept was the same with 2 butterflies and 2 rabbits. And expanded it to 6 erasures. 3 flowers and 3 chicks.

Then, I brought out paper circles that I had cut into halves and fourths. They easily showed me a whole circle and a half of a circle. Then I had them count how many pieces there were in the circle cut up into fourths and Kaytie instantly translated that into 1 fourth of a circle!

I wish fractions had been this easy and this much fun when I was in school! Math still scares me, so I am very glad that the kids take to it so easily and so well.

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