Monstrous Math

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Mathematics/Arithmetic Language Arts/Writing Technology

Description: In this lesson, students use fraction circles to create a "fraction monster." Students practice their skills in adding fractions with unlike denominators. The activity also provides an opportunity to integrate creative writing into the math curriculum. The students will play a game on the internet (websites chosen by the teacher) to enable more practice with fractions. Students will also use Kidspiration Fraction Action to practice more with their fractions. The students will explore and play games on 2 chosen Internet websites. Goal: Students will be able to add fractions with unlike denominators and use their creative writing skills to construct a short story. National/State Standards: Grades 3–5 Expectations: In grades 3–5 all students should– • develop understanding of fractions as parts of unit wholes, as parts of a collection, as locations on number lines, and as divisions of whole numbers

Objectives: The students will: 1. create a "fraction monster" using at least four different types of fraction circle pieces (halves, twelfths, thirds, etc.). 2. add the fractions in their "fraction monsters" to arrive at a total value. 3. write a creative short story about their "fraction monsters." 4. use the internet to practice fraction games. 5. use Kidspiration Fraction Tiles to compare and order fractions and to develop basic fraction operations.

Materials:

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Ellison cutouts of fraction circle pieces [each type of fraction (halves, thirds, fourths, etc.) should be a different color] white sheets of construction paper glue pencils paper posterboard a computer Access to Internet Explorer Kidspiration program http://www.aaamath.com/fra16-fractions.html website http://www.gamequarium.com/math.htm website

Procedures:
Activity One (notice that the first part include the Teacher’s procedures/actions and the second part consists of Students’ procedures/tasks to complete the activity) 1. Teacher will prepare the classroom for the activity by collecting required materials and resources for students to use for the hands-on activity. 2. Teacher will develop instructional materials for the lesson activity (e.g., overheads). 3. Review the addition of fractions with different denominators. Write a couple of problems on the board, and review how to find a common denominator. Inform students that they are going to do some "monstrous math problems" today. 4. Put the box of Ellison cutouts in a central location. Explain that the cutouts represent fractions of whole circles (you may want to sketch a couple of examples on the board -one circle divided into thirds, another circle divided into sixths, etc.). Let students know that each color represents a different fraction (e.g., a yellow piece is 1/2, a red piece is 1/4, etc.). 5. Ask students to use at least four different types of fraction circle pieces to create a "fraction monster." Students can glue their pieces on a sheet of white construction paper. Remind students to put their names on their papers. 6. After students have created their monsters, they should add up the fraction values that they used. 7. Students will record their work on a piece of paper (to be collected later). 8. Ask students to share their results to see who has a monster made up of the most whole circles and who has a monster made up of the least whole circles. 9. Then, have students write a creative short story about their monsters on paper to be presented to class and later pasted to a class posterboard for everyone to see. Students will vote on whose story is the best. 10. Remind students to check their work for grammar, spelling, and punctuation. 11. Teacher will collect and display students' "fraction monsters" and stories, and check for accuracy in adding unlike denominators. Activity Two

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The teacher will divide the students into groups of two. The teacher will explain to the students that will practice their fractions by playing one of the two games they choose (the teacher’s choice of the two sites in which to use). To ensure the students are using the correct site, the teacher will access the sites for the students (by choice of the student). The students will take turns working on the game until the teacher feels it is time to move to the next activity. The students will then access Kidspiration Fraction Action. The groups will practice using Kidspiration Fraction Action.

Assessment/Evaluation:
Activity One The fraction monster activity will be evaluated using a 5 point rubric (1 being the lowest score) on these criteria: participation, accurate calculation, and problem-solving. The short story activity will be evaluated using a 5 point rubric (1 being the lowest score) on these criteria: participation, creativity, and presentation style.

Activity Two The Kidspiration Fraction Action will be evaluated by the student’s work on which they completed. The activity will be graded on a 10 point scale (according to how each student did.)