fractions

Fraction Boot Camp–Preparing for the STAAR Test

With our state test approaching we are reviewing concepts from earlier in the year to make sure we’ve got it!  Fraction Boot Camp was one way our class prepared this year.  Here’s how Fraction Boot Camp worked in my classroom:

STEP 1–Write fraction standards on chart paper, set class goals, and plan a class celebration.  Our class decided on 85% for each assessment as our goal and that we would celebrate with a picnic outside on a nice weather day when we met our goal.

STEP 2–Review each skill with a mini-lesson, have students complete a few ‘number problems’ to make sure they understand, then give partner time to work some word problems while meeting with a small group who needs a little extra help.  Number problems are simply working with the numbers.  I need to know that my students understand equivalent fractions with mixed numbers and improper fractions prior to giving them lots of word problems to solve!  Check out CC Sheets.  It is one of my favorites for number only problems.  Because I teach the TEKS and not CC, I search by skill rather than standard and grade level.

STEP 3– Assess and report class averages on the chart.  The kids love to see their progress posted in the classroom.

Valentine's Day fractions matching game for equivalent fractions, including mixed numbers and improper fractions

Valentine’s Day fractions matching game for equivalent fractions, including mixed numbers and improper fractions

This year’s Fraction Boot Camp was a big success!  Our class averages were in the 90s each time and we got to celebrate with a picnic outside.   We also played some fraction games and you can find those here!  There is a winter set, Valentine’s Day set, and St. Patrick’s Day shamrock set.

St. Patrick's Day/Shamrock Theme Game--Students sort fractions by finding equivalent fractions and matching them to the simplified (or reduced) fraction.

St. Patrick’s Day/Shamrock Theme Game–Students sort fractions by finding equivalent fractions and matching them to the simplified (or reduced) fraction.

Fun heart themed fractions games to help students practice matching equivalent fractions, including improper fractions and mixed numbers.

Fun heart themed fractions games to help students practice matching equivalent fractions, including improper fractions and mixed numbers.

un winter-themed game for students to practice equivalent fractions, including improper fractions and mixed numbers!

Fun winter-themed game for students to practice equivalent fractions, including improper fractions and mixed numbers!

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Anchor Chart Friday (originally posted 12/6/2013)

I’ve been working hard to add more ‘color’ to the charts my kiddos and I make.  My students have really responded to this.  We discuss, all the time, how the brain thinks in pictures and that illustrating and diagram-ing in science, social studies, and EVERYTHING can really help learning ‘stick,’  so it was only a matter of time before I had to start drawing, too!  While my artistic skills leave much to be desired, it has been a bonding experience for my students and I.  They know I am taking a risk every time I try to draw, and we laugh together at the results, someone usually offers a stretched compliment, and it makes for a memorable experience.  Here are a few charts we’ve made recently.

Here is “What we THINK we know about the Earth, Moon, and Sun.” (below)

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5th Grade Food Chain–I always label my pictures so they are easier to understand! (below)

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Before we delved into fractions, we discussed what they were and how they are used. (below)

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