Lesson Title: Identifying and Understanding Equivalent Fractions
Grade Level: 4
Subject: Mathematics
Time Frame: 60 minutes

Brief Description of Group: The fourth grade classroom is comprised of 25 students. There are 12 girls and 13 boys. Five students are on Individualized Education Programs, and eight students are English Language Learners.

Intended Learning Outcome: The goal of this lesson is for students to be able to identify equivalent fractions. Students will be able to visually represent equivalent fractions and conceptualize that equivalent fractions represent numbers that look different, but are the same size. Sets of equivalent fractions to be learned in this lesson are ½, 1/3, and ¼.

Lesson Plan
Massachusetts Curriculum Frameworks and Learning Standard (s):
4.NF.1: Explain why a fraction a/b is equivalent to a fraction (n x a)/(n x b) by using visual fraction models, with attention to how the number and size of the parts differ even though the two fractions themselves are the same size. Use this principle to recognize and generate equivalent fractions. [Note: Grade 4 expectations in this domain are limited to denominators 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 8, 10, 12, and 100].

Lesson Objective (s):
Content Objective:
  • Students will be able to define what an equivalent fraction is and explain why two given fractions are or are not equivalent.
  • Students will be able to determine if two fractions are equivalent using shapes.
  • Students will be able to recognize that equivalent fractions are equal in value.
Language Objective:
  • Students will understand how to explain equivalent fractions through listening, speaking, and writing fractional amounts.
  • Students will be encouraged to use unit vocabulary to enhance their understanding of this concept.

Core Vocabulary:
  • Fraction, Mixed number, Numerator, Denominator, Equivalent, Visual Fraction Model

  • BrainPOP video on computer
  • Frieda Fraction worksheet (25)
  • Pizza visuals (3)
  • Pizza Fraction worksheet (25)
  • Colored pencils
  • Chart paper with pairs and small groups listed
  • GO FISH cards (13 sets) + Graphic organizer for game (1 per each student)
  • Fraction Strip manipulative with dry erase marker (1 per each group)

Connection (students seated on rug):
  • Activate Background Knowledge: “Yesterday we started to talk about fractions and reviewed that every fraction represents something less than one. We also learned new math terms like numerator and denominator. I’d like to show you a quick video to get us thinking about fractions some more.”
    • BrainPOP Fractions Video.
    • After video, teacher will introduce Equivalent Fraction lesson and reference the objectives for the day.
    • Pre-Assessment: “Lets start off by brainstorming what it means to be equivalent. Turn and talk to a partner and discuss what is means to be equivalent.”
      • Teacher to assess students’ prior knowledge based on number of hands raised and answers provided during brainstorming time.
      • Students were given “fraction practice” worksheet at the start of the unit to assess overall comprehension of fractions.

Teaching Phase (students back at their desks):
  • “There are many helpful strategies we can use to identify equivalent fractions. One strategy that I like to use is by way of visual representation.” Begin instruction on the white board – Give examples that relate to everyday life.
  • Stories and Scenario Pizza Pies:There will be three laminated pizzas on the board. Teacher will ask three volunteers to join her up at the board. Students to listen to scenarios and will be instructed to divide up the pizza and shade certain areas according to the story (3 rounds of scenarios concentrating on finding equivalent fractions of ½, 1/3, and ¼. Teacher to use vocabulary such as halves, thirds, and fourths).
    • Model thinking as to how each pizza can be considered to be an equivalent fraction.
    • Students to follow along and draw the examples up on the board on their own sheets of paper with colored pencils.

Active Involvement (students to be seated at their desks, working in groups):
  • While still seated at their own desks, students will discuss with their groups a new scenario to represent equivalent fractions that they’ve created on their own. *Remind students that fractions are made up of EQUAL parts.
    • Reconvene as a group to discuss each group’s strategy. Invite one student up to the whiteboard to share how his/her group visually represented equivalent fractions on the laminated circles.
    • Transition to guided practice part of the lesson. Explain to students that the will be working in groups or pairs (reference pairings chart). Remind them of content and language objectives.

Guided Practice:
Procedure & Practice (students to be working in pre-determined pairs or groups):
  • Equivalent Fraction GO FISH!:Students will work to match equivalent fraction cards.
    • Model game with partner and demonstrate how to use the “Fraction Strip” sheet to check answers.
    • Directions will be verbally read once to the class. In addition, each group will find written directions on paper included within bags of GO FISH cards.
    • Mrs.X will work with small group of four to five students. These students have been pre-selected because of their IEP’s or because they have shown weaknesses in areas of math. Mrs. X will verbally read instructions to small group again.
    • Game description:
      • GO FISH can be played in groups of 2 or more. Students are given a set of 30 GO FISH cards (for group of 5, I will provide additional cards). There are 15 pairs of equivalent fractions within each set. Students start with five cards each. One card at a time, Student A will ask Student B if he/she has an equivalent fraction match for fraction X. If Student B has a match, Student A wins the cards and places them in a pile. If Student B does not have a match, Student A to GO FISH. Students to use laminated “fraction strip” sheet and to record work on “GO FISH Recording Sheet”.

  • Walk around the room assisting any students who need additional help.
  • Students will use GO FISH fraction card manipulatives, a blank circle fractions worksheet, and the laminated “Fraction Strips” worksheet with a dry erase marker.
  • Students will be able to visually see anchor chart from lesson. If students finish early, they may work on forming more examples of equivalent fractions on their pizza fractions worksheet.
  • Groups will be strategically selected based on learning ability.

Wrap Up:
  • Students to return to their desks after completion of pair/group work. As a whole group, we will review our objectives for the day. By way of two thumbs up, students to raise their hands if they feel we met our objectives.
  • Students to share examples of new equivalent fractions they found during game of GO FISH that had not been mentioned before.
  • On a large post-it note, students to reflect on the lesson. “Please reflect on two things you learned from our work with equivalent fractions today”. Students will have the choice to write their reflections, draw a picture to represent an equivalent fraction, or verbally speak to me (after the lesson) to demonstrate knowledge of the topic learned.

Formative/Ongoing Assessment:
  • Teacher to formally assess students throughout the entire lesson. Formative assessments will continue throughout the duration of the fraction unit as well.
    • During the “guided practice” portion of the lesson, teacher to be walking around and assessing each student individually. Assessments will be by way of conversation in the form of asking students to orally describe how he/she know it is an equivalent fraction and by checking students papers to make sure that they are recording correct answers.
    • Students to self-assess by checking if their answers are correct on the “fraction strip” worksheet.

Summative Assessment:
  • Students will be given a homework sheet on equivalent fractions.
  • At the end of the unit, there will be an exam given to students where it will ask them to identify equivalent fractions.

Potential Challenges:
  • Certain students may struggle with the transition of representing equivalent fractions in a circle to then using the Fraction Strip worksheet where the equivalent fractions are in the form of rectangles.
    • In addition, the Investigations curriculum models fractions in rectangular form. The intent of using circles in this lesson is to help students become familiar with other shapes and things that can be divided into equal fractions as well.
    • Students may not fully understand GO FISH game.

Next Steps:
  • For tomorrow’s lesson, students will learn how to use common denominators and symbols to compare two fractions. By way of visual representation, students will be able to build upon what they’ve learned in this lesson to conceptualize why one fraction is of greater or lesser value than the other.

Anchor Charts and other materials:

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