This morning we had the privilege of observing Jo Know in action with some of our target group learners. These students are working at standard 6 in maths. This places just below the national standard in maths. Normally a very talkative group they were very quiet. A number of differences for these students
1. New teacher
2. Not in the normal class setting
3. 5 teachers watching their every step
You can see that it was a hard task for our students to relax at first and get into things. Once they did we learned so much! We could see a clear need to develop language and understanding around the focus of session. This was on converting fractions to decimals and vice versa.
Things we can try:
1. Give students the chance to try the following on their own bit of paper, reassure them it's not a matter or right and wrong. It's a matter of trying out any strategy they have.
2. Have students fold paper strip into halves, lable, the same again for quarters then eighths. This seemed straight forward to our students. However once asking to go back to identify now what 3/4 were AFTER paper was folded into eighths, this really threw them. The became indecisive. The prompt for decision making was made when made to use a scissors to quickly cut quarters with a countdown from 5. This action seemed to plant more understanding, some very nervous to decided where to cut!
Here's how it all started:
Teacher could ask the following (to check where students are at)Can you write 0.27One tenth?Three fifths?Five quarters?One tenth as a decimal?0.27 + 0.2 =?
We discovered a number of work ons and were led by Jo to the following the next steps when in class in next with target group:
** Next step going back to improper fractions
Use double number and more line for this. 3/2….the 3 is the ‘COUNT’ of how many halfs.
Lines would be:
- Whole number line
- ½ line
- ¼ line
Materials, push the imaging
Where they can’t work things out...go back to materials then back to imaging
Below is an example of a number line to develop understanding of equivalent fractions and to work with in use of improper fractions.