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Wednesday, February 4, 2015

Math Game to Teach Fractions, Decimals, and Percents

Thanks to Carolyn Markel from Jane Addams Resource Corporation for sharing this fun and easy math idea! Carolyn is part of the northern Special Learning Needs Institute group.

For teaching fractions, decimals and percents, I write different fractions, decimals and percents on index cards (maybe 30 or 40).  I shuffle the deck of cards, and I have my students gather around a large table.  I tell the students that one end of the table is "0" and the other end is "1".  Each student takes turns selecting one of the index cards.  The student has to place his/her card at the appropriate spot on the table.  For example, if one student selects 1/10, the student would put the card towards the "0" end of the table.  If the next student selects  55%, the student would put that card between the 1/10 card and the "1" end of the table.  It gets harder and harder as more students put more cards down on the table because the students have more choices as to which two cards their card should be placed between.  At the end of the activity, the whole table is full of fractions/decimals/percents in order from least to greatest - it sort of creates a giant number line.  The students find it helpful to see how the values of different numbers are related to one another.  As a teacher, I learn a lot about my students because I get to watch their decision-making process in action, and correct misunderstandings immediately.

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