Part Two: Measuring to the Nearest 1/4 Inch

Alright.  I have already shared my feelings on measurement and how I started my measurement unit this go around.  Already my stress level was at about  7 instead of its usual 9 about this time of year.  Ahh ... nice big breath.

Let me share how I completed step two of this process.  After introducing to students the unit fraction, I wanted to start show students that there are many different ways to represent one fractional amount.  I gave each student a set of fraction bars (Do you have these?  I LOVE mine!)

I had the students pull out the 1/2 fraction bar and explain that I wanted to see if students could make 1/2 another way with different bars- but they had to stick with the SAME color fraction (no mixing 1/8 and 1/3 or whatever).  Then students had to prove they were the same length by laying the fractions under the 1/2.  Eventually as students worked and talked they began seeing that 1/2 was also 2/4, 3/6, 4/8, 5/10 and 6/12.

Next (because I wanted to reinforce number lines) I made  6 number lines and showed how that 1/2, 2/4, 3/6, 4/8, 5/10 and 6/12 all lined up on the same places on their number lines.   We discussed how all of these were different ways of saying 1/2 and they were all equivalent.

And that was all we did.  I know, simple, not rocket science but it DID take up the whole time AND it was all their little brains could process.  Up next: relating all this newfound knowledge to a ruler.

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