The top reason students struggle with fractions, according to math education research, is that they must follow rules that make no sense to them.
When you ask your students to add, subtract, divide or multiply fractions, they either can’t remember the right fraction rule (e.g. to add fractions with a common denominator, just add the numerators, to add fractions without a common denominator...) or can’t apply the rule because they don’t yet understand what a fraction is.
Learning by doing clearly isn’t working well based on math performance. For students to become proficient and fluent with fractions, you have to help them build their mathematical understanding, and one of the most effective ways to do this is through classroom number talks.
Join Sherry Parish, author of Number Talks: Helping Children Build Mental Math and Computation Strategies, for a 2-hour webinar on guiding classroom conversations and discussions around purposefully crafted computation problems with fractions. Learn how to provide very structured, scaffolded strategies that help students build number sense. Recharge your math classroom with this engaging approach to developing the mathematical understanding students need to progress to algebra and advanced math study.
- Why fractions are difficult for students
- How students’ inappropriate whole number reasoning interferes with computation and reasoning with fractions
- What is a Number Talk? How you can use routine Number Talks to support fractional reasoning and computation
- How do Number Talks support the Standards for Mathematical Practice?
- Strategies students can use to add, subtract, multiply and divide fractions
- Using models and real-life contexts to develop students’ reasoning with fractions
- What shifts in teaching practice are recommended by NCTM’s Teaching Practices