# Fractions of a Whole

Ready, set, fractions! In this hands-on lesson, your students will familiarize themselves with common fractions using concrete materials to practice splitting items into halves, thirds, and quarters.

### Learning Objectives

Students will be able to identify fractions and divide items into halves, thirds, and quarters.

## Lesson

### Introduction *(2 minutes)*

- Explain to your class that today, they will be learning about fractions. Define a
**fraction**as a part of a whole. - Draw a picture of a common fraction on the board, to better illustrate the concept to your students.

### Explicit Instruction/Teacher Modeling *(15 minutes)*

- Display the orange or lemon to your class, and tell them that you want to give half of the fruit to a person in the class.
- Use your knife to cut the citrus in half. Give one of the halves to a student volunteer.
- Write the fraction 1/2 on the whiteboard.
- Explain to students that the
**denominator**, or number on the bottom, tells how many equal parts the item is divided into. Tell your class that the**numerator**, or number on the top, tells how many of those parts are being referred to. - Show the students your chocolate bar, and tell them that you're going to divide that chocolate bar into three equal pieces.
- Divide your chocolate bar into thirds.
- Give one third to a student volunteer.
- Tell your class that you just gave away one third of your chocolate bar.
- Write 1/3 on the chalkboard.
- Explain once more to students that the denominator tells how many equal parts the item is divided into, and the numerator tells how many parts are being referred to.

### Guided Practice/Interactive Modeling *(20 minutes)*

- Show your students the second chocolate bar, and tell them that you're going to divide this into three equal parts as well.
- Divide the chocolate bar using your knife.
- Tell a student volunteer to take two of the three pieces, and ask the class some questions to gauge comprehension. For example:
*How much of the chocolate bar has been taken? How do you know?* - Choose a student to come to the front of the class and write a fraction that represents the pieces that were taken from the chocolate bar. The volunteer should write 2/3 on the board.
- Choose students to call out the definitions for numerator and denominator again.
- Repeat this process, dividing the cupcake into four equal parts.
- After some practice, draw a circle on the board. Below the circle, write the fraction 3/4.
- Ask a student volunteer to shade in the correct number of parts on the circle, so that the visual matches the fraction 3/4. Guide the class in helping the volunteer, asking questions such as:
*How many parts should the circle be divided into? How can you tell? How many of those parts should be shaded in? Why?* - Ensure that your volunteer correctly divides the circle into four equal parts, and shades in three of them.
- Explain to the class that the fraction 3/4 is the same as a circle divided into four equal parts, with three of those parts shaded in.

### Independent Working Time *(15 minutes)*

- Pass out a copy of the Fraction Coloring worksheet to each student, along with crayons.
- Instruct students to read the instructions for each question on the worksheet, and to complete the worksheet independently.

## Extend

### Differentiation

**Enrichment:**Encourage advanced students to tackle more complicated fractions, such as 2/5 and 5/6. Students can draw examples of more complex fractions in their notebooks or on white paper. Alternatively, you could give students a few fractions that can be simplified (such as 2/4 and 2/6) and ask them to tell you why 2/4 is the same as 1/2, for example.**Support:**Avoid the words "denominator" and "numerator" with students who are struggling; these terms may make fractions more confusing. Instead, work with these students in a small group, emphasizing that the top number refers to the number of parts being taken or given, and the bottom number refers to the number of parts of the whole.

## Review

### Assessment *(5 minutes)*

- Assess your students' understanding of basic fractions by having them complete the Fractions Quiz before leaving the classroom.

### Review and Closing *(8 minutes)*

- To close the lesson, review the definitions of fraction, numerator, and denominator.

## Teacher Tips