Junior Years (Age 9 – 12)

*Junior: Fractions*

- Use drawings and models to represent, compare, and order fractions representing the individual portions.
- Represent fractions from halves to tenths using drawings, tools, and standard fractional notation, and explain the meanings of the denominator and the numerator.

- Students will need desk space to work on their designs.
- Students should be comfortable with fraction concepts, such as naming and recognizing fractions.

- Large sheet of construction paper or poster board
- One-inch grid paper (cut into 2×2 pieces)
- Many pencil crayons or crayons – a selection of 4 different colours
- Glue sticks or tape
- Print-out of classroom questions (Appendix A)

- Provide each student with a pre-cut piece of 2×2 grid paper.
- If students are confident working with fractions, begin the activity by with 4×4 squares.

- Ask students to select three of the four colour options to work with.
- We suggest limiting the colour options to three so students create a variety of colour combinations, but no one can create a grid using all four colours.

- Ask students to colour their 2×2 block using any combination of the three colours they selected.
- For example, one student could choose to have one red square, one blue square, and two green squares.

- Ask students to determine the fractions represented by each colour.
- Using the previous example, the student would have ¼ red, ¼ blue, and ½ green.

- Ask students to find the sum of their fractions and discuss why the sum of every quilt block is one.
- In pairs, ask students to combine their grids so that they are now working with a 2×4 grid.
- Ask each pair to determine the fractions represented by each of the colours on their combined 2 x 4 grid.
- For example, the students may now have this combination: 1/8 red, 1/8 yellow, ¼ blue, and ½ green.

- Have each pair of students join another pair of students. They will combine their grids to create a 4×4 grid. Ask each group to determine the fraction represented by each colour on their combined 4 x 4 grid.
- When the groups have finished combining their grids, consider asking the following questions:
- Which colour occupies the largest fraction of this combined quilt block?
- Are there sets of quilt blocks that are equivalent to or greater than a third of the quilt when combined? What about equivalent to or greater than half of the quilt?
- How does combining your grids change the fraction of each colour?

- Combine all the quilt blocks on poster board to create one large quilt design for the class.
- To challenge your students and classroom visitors, post a series of questions next to the class quilt design (Appendix A).

- Are students able to communicate what fraction of their quilt is represented by a given colour?
- Are students able to accurately use fractions to represent their quilts?
- Are students using the correct mathematical terms, such as numerator and denominator, when discussing their quilt blocks?
- Are students able to recognize equivalent fractions and changes in fraction magnitude?

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