Math - Fractions
Author:  Laura Wilson

Grade Level:  Intermediate ( Learning Disabled Students)
Time Required: 60 Minutes
Objective:  The students will understand that fractions are used to describe parts of a whole.  The denominator names the total number of parts in the whole  and the numerator gives the number of parts of that whole
Materials:  An apple, a knife, a bag of M&M's,  the M&M Fraction Worksheet, individual white boards and markers, and colored cubes.

1.  Open with a discussion on fractions.  Find out what students know about fractions.
2.  Using a web, write the word fraction and the definition in the middle circle.  Ask students to come up with things that they can divide into parts.  After their responses, discuss how they would divide their responses.  Keep this web for later use.
3. Take an apple and tell the students you have a whole apple.  Slice the apple into two.  Now, ask the students how many parts do you have?  Write their answer on the board.  Explain that the number that names the number of total parts in the apple is the denominator.  Tell them that one part is 1 out of 2 or 1/2.
4.  Next slice each part in half again.  Ask students how many parts you have?  Write their answer on the board.  Again, explain that the name for the number of total parts is the denominator. Tell them that one part is 1 out of 4 or 1/4.  Explain that if you took one part out of the four, that would be the numerator.  Continue discussing the different parts, using the words numerator and denominator.  Slice each part in half again and do the same.
5.  Take out a bag of M&Ms.  Give each student twelve M&M's.  Work through the attached M&M Fraction Worksheet as a whole group.
6.  After the worksheet is completed, have all the students eat 3/12's of their M&M's.  Now ask them how many total M&M's do they have left?  See if any of the students can come up with factions using the new denominator number.  Make sure they use the terms, numerator and denominator when they are discussing their new fractions.
7.  Go back to the web that was constructed in the beginning of the lesson and discuss the items they could divide.  Bring in the new terms they have learned.  For example, if someone said they could divide a pizza into 8 pieces, then discuss how that number 8 would name the denominator in a fraction and if a student ate 2 pieces then discuss how the 2 would name the numerator.  Now 2/8's of the pizza would be gone and 6/8's of the pizza would be left.
8.  On the attached paper,  page 5. Have them write a statement that tells what they learned today.
Evaluation:  For evaluation, pass out individual white boards and markers.  Using colored cubes, put out some cubes in two colors.  For example put out 3 green and 5 yellow.    Using their white boards, ask students to write the fraction of green cubes.  Then ask students to write the fraction of yellow cubes.  Walk around and and check their fractions.   This will help you to see who understands the concept.  Using individual white boards can be more motivating to many students then a worksheet.

End Note:  This lesson was designed for a small group of students who need more help in understanding the concept of fractions.  This lesson can also be used, with adaptions,  for a whole class.

M&M  Fractions
Using your M&M's, answer the following questions.

1.  How many total M&M's do you have? _____
2.  How many orange M&M's do you have? _____
3.  How many green M&M's do you have?  _____
4.  How many yellow M&M do you have?  _____
5.  How many brown M&M's do you have? _____
6.  How many red M&M's do you have?  _____
7.  How many blue M&M's do you have? _____

*Remember when you write fractions the bottom number, or the denominator, names the total number of parts. The top number, or the numerator, names the specific parts.

8.  What would be the fraction of orange M&M's? _____
9.  What would be the fraction of green M&M's? _____
10.  What would be the fraction of yellow M&M's? _____
11.  What would be the fraction of brown M&M's? _____
12.  What would be the fraction of red M&M's? _____
13.  What would be the fraction of blue M&M's? _____

If you were to divide your M&M's between two people, so each person would have an equal number, how many would each person have? ____
What fraction would that be? ______  Draw a picture to show the two groups.

For the next items, answer with a fraction and draw a picture to show how you divided the M&M's into groups.

What fraction would you have if you divided your M&M's equally between:
       Draw your picture here:
3 people?  _____

6 people?  _____

12 people?  _____

What is another way that you can divide your M&M's equally?

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