Action With Fractions

Brenda Dunstan
1st grade/Math

Links to Files Associated with This Lesson

  1. Student Sample: Drawing Fractions


Content Area Objectives Addressed:

The students will be able to

  1. Show an understanding of fractions by matching fractions with the appropriate diagrams of partially shaded figures.

  2. Identify parts of a whole (including ½, 1/3, and ¼).

  3. Develop spatial thinking by drawing shapes.

  4. Create equations using fractions.

Technology Objectives Addressed:

The students will be able to:

  1. Use the components of the drawing toolbar.

  2. Use Auto shapes to create two-dimensional shapes.

  3. Draw lines to divide Auto shapes in ½ and 1/4.

  4. Fill Auto shapes using Auto fill.

  5. Change the color of the Auto Shape’s exterior line.

  6. Save a document on the student network drive.

  7. Print a document.

  8. Use a SmartBoard.

  Activity Description

            What was the process that your students went through to complete this lesson?

The students have been studying the concept of fractions in math.  They will listen to a story called Fraction Action by Loreen Leedy.  We will discuss fractions during that story.  We will then use the Smart Board to make Auto Shapes and divide them into ½’s and ¼’s.  The students will them be given instructions on the activities they need to do at each of the centers, and will then rotate through the centers for approximately 1 hour, spending 15 minutes at each station.

The stations are:

After students have completed the center rotations, we will share our computer generated fractions on the Smart Board.  Then the students will get a treat to divide in half and share with their partner.  As a later activity, I will make copies of various students’ papers and give them out as practice sheets for the class to identify fractions.

How did you monitor student progress?

  1. Teacher Observation

Was there a template or an example that students were expected to follow?

There is a template with spaces for them to draw their shapes in, however, they could choose the shapes and the fractions.

How much time did you dedicate to this project?

                        Total:  2 hours

                        Daily (approximate):  2 hours

How was the final product presented?

Students were allowed to share their fractions page and have the other students in the class guess what fractions their shapes were divided into.   They will also get to print out their pages to take home.  In addition, I will use their pages as future worksheets for the class to complete—they will look at the fraction and write how it is divided.

Who was the audience for the final product?  

The students in our class were the audience for our final creation of fraction pages.

Learning Issues

What prior knowledge was required on the part of the students in order for them to be successful in this project? (Include curriculum and technology knowledge)

In order to complete this activity, students must have the following background knowledge:

1.       Understand that fractions involve dividing an object into equal parts.

2.      Know how to use Microsoft Word.

3.      Know how to save, print, click and drag, and change color.

Resource Management

What was the student to computer ratio?

·         One to one

How did you schedule your students’ computer time?

The students are scheduled in centers on certain days during math time.  I organized the students into their center groups at the beginning of the year to minimize wasted transition time.  If students are not able to complete an activity in centers, I will either make time for it the next day or allow them to work on it during recess.

What was the location of the computers and other technology equipment used by students?

The students used the 6 computers in our classroom.  This lesson could also be done in a lab setting or in a classroom with fewer computers.

How would you suggest beginning teachers obtain computer resources for their students? (Knowing some of your strategies would be valuable for our pre-service teachers.)

·         Write grants for obtaining technology. 

·         Become involved on the technology committee in your school.

Rate the level of access for students to use computers/other technologies as they needed  --high, medium, low

The level of access for students is high (1:1).

Rate the level of supervision required for students during the project, specifically for computer and other technology use –high, medium, low

The level of supervision for this project should be at the medium level.  The teacher may initially need to monitor and assist students on the computers, but should be able to rotate to assist students at other stations.


What hardware was required for your project?

6 computers

Smart Board


What software was required for your project?

Microsoft Word

            Anything else?

            Sets of cut out fraction pieces from the elison cutter

            Fraction worksheets and writing paper

            Fraction game from Learning Resources

            Story—Fraction Action by Loreen Leedy


            What kind of assessment did you use for this project? (Include a copy if you can.)

1.       Observation of students playing the fraction game

2.      Observation of students using computer program to create fractions.

3.      Completion of worksheet packet.

4.      Books generated by students.

What categories did you assess? (I.e.:  content, screen design, depth/breadth, etc.)

Completion of fraction story and packet

Involvement in the fraction game and the discussions

Thought process on the computer while creating the fractions

Sharing of computer designed fractions


How does the product that you submitted compare with other students’ products for this same project?

The products I submitted are typical of the type and quality of products completed by a majority of the students.  I included samples from one high student, three medium students and one low student.  In addition, several students completed an additional sheet where they used other Auto Shapes; I have included one of the samples from that activity.

  What did you like best about this project?

The students were engaged in all of the centers, and they seemed to be able to take the concept of fractions from the concrete level to a very abstract level on the computers.  They were working at applying what they knew about fractions to create their own.

What did the students like best about this project?

They enjoyed the computer activity and the fraction game in particular.  They also enjoyed being able to share their product on the Smart Board.

  Rank the level of student involvement in this project –high, medium, low


  Rank the level of student interest in this project –high, medium, low


  Would you teach this lesson again?

Yes—although I would possibly modify it so the students could use other auto shapes besides the oval and rectangle.