Fraction Talks

Fraction talks developed as a way to use the Number Talk routine to target fractions. A growing body of fraction talks are available at fractiontalks.com.

I’ve created a writeup below for how to use fraction talks, as well as a collection here which are ideal for introducing fraction talks to students early in their understanding of fractions, and then continuing in slowly increasing levels of difficulty.

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About this Lesson


Lesson Notes

Comments 5

  1. James Brickwedde

    After processing whether or not if the green shaded region of the first example is 3/4 or 3/8, an interesting follow-up question to pose is “What is 3/4 the correct answer to?” [3/4 of a 1/2 piece or 3/4 x 1/2]. Consider then posing the question to the class, “Is 3/4 of a half piece the same as having 3/8 of the whole piece?” [Write out the equation, 3/4 x 1/2 = 1/8 x 1] “Is that true or false?” I have been experimenting adding the “x 1” to help students – and the adults with whom I do p.d. – that one way to envision multiplication of fractions is through the re-unitizing of the first mathematical expression [3/4 of a 1/2 piece or 3/4 x 1/2] to the whole unit [x 1]. The area shaded green to the unit of one-half is compared [=] to the unit of the whole [x 1]. The eye just shifts from unitizing it from the one unit to the other. The area does not change; just the unit referent. This work grows out of my using some materials from Susan Lamon (2015).

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    2. Rebecca Ambrose

      HI Jim! Happy to see your name here and eager to share ideas about fraction talks with the teachers I work with.

  2. Carley

    Hi, I have a grade 6 class. They are converting fractions to percentages and decimals. Do you think this could be used for this purpose? I love the idea. It’s simple and interactive. You say in the description that this is grade 4-9. How would you modify this for older grades. (grade 6 specifically), thank you!

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      You can pretty much use them as is at a range of grades. The same image will give rise to various conversations depending on the depth of what kinds can see.

      If you want harder material, check out fractiontalks.com.

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