Comparing Fractions

karinkayfes's picture
Content Area(s):  
Grade Level(s):  
Oregon Common Core State Standards: 
Lesson Plan Details
One week

Students will learn...

to compare fractions. Students will use a variety of technology, including video, a computer game, interactive Smartboard activities, Kidspiration software, and a digital pre and post test to build and cement their understanding of how to compare fractions.


Student computers, Smartboard, Smart Notebook software, Kidspiration software


Prior to instruction, the teacher needs to...

-become familiar with Kidspiration software.

-preview the video and game.

-set up a way for students to access the required websites and activities, whether through a drive students can access or by downloading them onto student computers.


In this lesson, the teacher will...

-Administer the comparing fraction pretest by having students access it on their computers. Students raise their hands when finished so teacher can record score. Teacher may choose to design a different pre/post test with clickers, if that technology is available.

 -Display the fractions on a number line activity on the Smartboard (this is adapted from a lesson from Investigations- Different Shapes, Equal Pieces). Have students look at it and then talk with a partner to see if they can decide where some of the fractions belong on the number line. Call on a few volunteers to come and move a fraction to the place where they think it belongs. After each one, check in with the class to see if they agree. There will be some that are easy, but there will be many that students will be unsure about. Record some pairs of fractions that come up in this discussion that students are unsure about which is larger in a Smart Notebook document. Ask students if they know any ways we can compare two fractions so that we know for sure which is greater.

 -Tell students that one way to compare two fractions is by building a model. Open the math view in Kidspiration software on the Smartboard, then open fraction tiles. Write a pair of fractions that students were unsure about from the number line activity. Show students how you can pull tiles out to build a model of those two fractions side by side so they can see which is larger. Then show how to record in math notation the pair of fractions with the greater than/less than sign. Have students work in pairs on student computers to select a few pairs of fractions to investigate by building models using the fraction tiles.

 -Open Kidspiration on the Smartboard and use the fraction tiles to build a model of 2/3 and 3/4. Drag out the 1/12 tiles to build the equivalent fractions 8/12 and 9/12. Tell students that if we know that 2/3 = 8/12 and 3/4 = 9/12, we would not have to build a model because we would already know which fraction was larger.

 -Demonstrate on the Smartboard the traditional algorithm for comparing fractions with common denominators and equivalent fractions. Provide students with guided practice.

 -Have students practice comparing fractions by completing the fraction vortex activity in pairs on their computers. Teacher circulates to observe students.

 -Have students view the math playground video of how to compare fractions to review the traditional algorithm.

 -Ask students to complete the comparing fractions worksheet. Allow students who are having trouble to review the video and take notes.

 -Have students complete the fractions on a number line individually. It can be printed when complete and used as a formative assessment. Then the class can revise their first try with it altogether on the Smartboard.

 -Reteach a small group, if necessary, while the rest of the class plays Fraction Eaters on student computers.

 -Administer the pretest again, this time as a post test. Record student scores. If any students still need additional practice, the teacher may choose to have the class explore more fraction models in Kidspiration, perhaps for fractions greater than one, or play Fraction Eaters again while the teacher works with students who need additional support.


Compare students' pre and post test scores.

Fraction numberline activity as a formative assessment- were students able to put all the fractions in order?

Oregon Educational Technology Standards
Communication and Collaboration: 
2A. Interact and collaborate with peers, experts, or others employing a variety of digital environments and media.
Critical Thinking, Problem Solving and Decision Making: 
4A. Identify and define authentic problems and significant questions for investigation.
Katelyn Burke's picture

This lesson seems like it would be really fun and engaging for students! It looks like you seamlessly integrated various types of technology in a way that kept students focused while they learned about fractions. I really appreciate how you differentiated instruction throughout the lesson and how you honored students by calling them up to move fractions on the Smartboard. I also often call student volunteers up to demonstrate concepts on the Smartboard and to share their thoughts (and have found that it is a great way to keep them engaged and excited about math!).

John Craft's picture

Integrating technology into math is a great way to still get manipulatives in and have a way to integrate writing! I could use this lesson to record student explanations for solving math "problems."