```Understanding FractionsBradley, Florida                              Hartigan                                              548-1811                           Objective:

Students will be able to recognize and understand equal
fractions in relationship to a whole unit.

Materials Needed:

Construction Paper (cut into strips of equal widths and lengths)
Paper clips
Pen (preferably black)
Cookbooks (for recipes)
Patterns (for sewing)
Scissors
Various fruits (cut into fractional parts, which may be shared
with  the students at the end of this activity)

Recommended Strategy:

Discuss with the students the fact that fractions are a part of
their daily lives.  Elicit from the students  some of these areas.
The students should tell you of such fractions as related to cooking,
sewing, money, food, etc.  Have samples of foods, vegetables, patterns,
cookbooks, etc. divided into fractional parts.  Give the students an
opportunity to touch and discuss these items.  Depending on the level
of the students, you may want to stop the lesson at this point until
another day.  If you are going to continue, proceed in the following
manner.
Using assorted sheets of construction paper, cut each sheet into
strips of equal widths and lengths.  Your first strip will represent
a whole unit.  With a paper clip, make a bundle of strips of various
colors for each student.  Have the students lay the first strip out on
their desk.  The first strip will remain a whole unit.  Tell the
students this strip will represent a whole unit.  The second strip
will be folded into two equal parts (one-half, 1/2).  At this point,
have the students compare 1/2 strip with the whole strip.  How many
halves make a whole?  Elicit from the students the correct response
and discussion of the meaning of one half.  The next strip should be
folded into three equal parts (one-third, 1/3).  Be sure to give the
students an opportunity to experiment with the folding.  Some of them
may need help.  Have the students compare 1/3 strip to the whole
strip.  How many thirds make a whole unit?   Give the students an
opportunity to compare and discuss.  Have the students compare 1/2
and 1/3 strips.  Which is the largest, 1/2 or 1/3?  Be sure to allow
the students time to compare and discuss.  As you allow the students
to fold each strip, be sure to have them draw lines to show the
divisions of each part of the strip.  The students should also be
allowed to write the fractional names on each part.  Proceed in this
manner until you have reached 1/6.  At this point you should stop
with the folding.  If there is enough time let the students compare
the fractional parts they have made and see if they can make other
fractional parts(i.e. fold 1/2 in half to get 1/4, fold the 1/4 in
half to get 1/8, fold the 1/5 in half to get 1/10, etc).  This lesson
can be continued for several days depending upon the level of your
class.  You may use this folding activity to show other mathematical
operations.
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