Monday, July 15, 2013

Free Lesson Plans: Fraction Game

We love fractions!
  Photo by justJenn- see Recipe

The Fraction Game


This is a great game to help students with fractions. It gets them interested in fractions, helps their skills with determining which fraction is larger, draw pie charts of fractions, simplify fractions, making fractions equivalent, and perhaps a chance at converting fractions to percentages. (Optional.)


Help students become more familiar with fractions.

Base Knowledge Needed:

Simplifying fractions
Making fractions equivalent

Grade Level:

Preferably 3rd
I did this with 5th grade students that needed help with fractions. It would be great to start this out in 3rd grade when they’re first learning it. Apply it any time to help students struggling with fractions- even in high school.

Common Core Standards:

  CCSS.Math.Content.3.NF.A.1 Understand a fraction 1/b as the quantity formed by 1 part when a whole is partitioned into b equal parts; understand a fraction a/b as the quantity formed by a parts of size 1/b.
  • CCSS.Math.Content.3.NF.A.3 Explain equivalence of fractions in special cases, and compare fractions by reasoning about their size.
    • CCSS.Math.Content.3.NF.A.3a Understand two fractions as equivalent (equal) if they are the same size, or the same point on a number line.
    • CCSS.Math.Content.3.NF.A.3b Recognize and generate simple equivalent fractions, e.g., 1/2 = 2/4, 4/6 = 2/3. Explain why the fractions are equivalent, e.g., by using a visual fraction model.
  • CCSS.Math.Content.3.NF.A.3d Compare two fractions with the same numerator or the same denominator by reasoning about their size. Recognize that comparisons are valid only when the two fractions refer to the same whole. Record the results of comparisons with the symbols >, =, or <, and justify the conclusions, e.g., by using a visual fraction model.
  • CCSS.Math.Content.4.NF.A.1 Explain why a fraction a/b is equivalent to a fraction (n × a)/(n× b) by using visual fraction models, with attention to how the number and size of the parts differ even though the two fractions themselves are the same size. Use this principle to recognize and generate equivalent fractions.
  • CCSS.Math.Content.4.NF.A.2 Compare two fractions with different numerators and different denominators, e.g., by creating common denominators or numerators, or by comparing to a benchmark fraction such as 1/2. Recognize that comparisons are valid only when the two fractions refer to the same whole. Record the results of comparisons with symbols >, =, or <, and justify the conclusions, e.g., by using a visual fraction model.

Built-In Interventions:

Friendly towards auditory, visual, and kinesthetic learners

Includes a good deal of practice on the same skills
Based on students’ interests

Possible Interventions

Student Aid 
Teacher Aid

Necessary Tools:

Pizza/pie/cupcakes/cake/candy such as M&M’s, Skittles, or any other type in a bag.


To make this lesson the most effective, do it about every day between other activities- it refreshes the students and gets them excited about math. The great part is you can begin with putting the fractions on the board yourself, but as you continue the students really enjoy creating the fractions for each other! All you have to do is sit back, watch, and make sure the math is correct! It’s great seeing students taking charge of their own learning.

Candy Style:

Take two bags and place a given number in candy in each bag (they don’t have to be the same.) Ask a student if they would like a fraction of one bag or the other. Ask the rest of the class if they agree or disagree with the decision. Give the student the number of pieces they chose of the candy.
Fill one bag with 22 pieces and the other with 15. Tell them how many pieces of candy are in each bag. Ask the student, “Would you like 11/22 of this bag, or 13/15 of this bag?” or “Would you like 6/11 of this bag or 4/30 of this bag?” Mix it up a little to throw them off guard.

Circle or Bar Style:

(Obviously you can do any shape you want, I just stuck with circles and bars.) Bring in a baked good or food in a circle or rectangle shape. Ask students what fraction they would like. Ask the other students if they agree or disagree with the decision. The first time you do this you take two of the items out and cut each into that fraction to show them in concrete terms how much they could have had and how much they chose. After the first time you can just display on the board each fraction. Give the student the fraction they asked for.
Bring in some cupcakes. Ask the student, “Would you like 1/3 of a cupcake or 2/5?” or “Would you like 6/18 or ½?” or “Would you like 2/6 or 1/3?” Cut the cupcakes and give the student the fraction that they chose.

Optional- if you want you can then convert the fractions to percentages- for example, “Shaniqua chose 1/3 of the cupcake, that’s 33.33333%, she could have had 6/12, that’s 50%.” 

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