Beacon Lesson Plan Library

Hello, Fractions!

Jane Neale


Students gain an understanding about simple fractions through the use of literature, hands-on manipulatives, as well as an Internet activity.


The student reads, writes, and identifies proper fractions with denominators including 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 8, 10, and 100.


-Book: Murphy, Stuart J. [Give Me Half!] NY, NY: Harper Collins Publishers, 1996. (This book tells the story of a brother and sister who must learn to equally share many food items. They eventually get into a food fight and realize that in order to clean it up quickly, they can share that task as well. This children's book teaches the concept of sharing and dividing items into two equal portions.)
-Book: Adler, David A. [Fraction Fun]. NY,NY: Holiday House, 1996. (This is a children's book about how fractions are found and used in our everyday life. This book uses a pizza to help teach the concept of fractions in a visual sense, showing how to divide a whole more than one way.)
-Computer Lab with computers bookmarked with the Websites for the Internet activity.
-Internet Fraction Activity Rubric located in the associated files
-Pattern blocks, a set for each group of 5 students
-Large T-chart paper and stand for front of room
-Paper plates (3 for each student)
-Fractional Pizza Activity Sheet,one per student, located in the associated file
-Different colored crayons for each student


1. Prior to the lesson, bookmark all computers to be used to the following Websites:
Visual Fractions

2. Reserve enough pattern blocks for group of five students to practice.

3. Have large T-chart and paper available.

4. Be certain to have literature books checked out or available. (See the Materials list.)

5. Have crayons, rulers, and paper plates available in the amount necessary for all students.

6. Make certain that the overhead is available and in the room.

7. Make certain there are enough copies of the rubric Internet Assessment for each student. (See associated file.)

8. Make enough copies for each student of the practice activity sheet. (See associated file.)


Please Note: This lesson plan only addresses the fraction of half, thirds, and fourths; therefore, it only covers part of the standard listed.

Prior to the lesson, all the computers should be bookmarked with the Website for the Internet activity.

Day 1

Activating Knowledge:
1. Begin the lesson by asking the students about what fractions mean. Use the T-chart to write/draw what fractions look like and for words that describe fractions. Tell them that we will add to this as we learn more.

2. Next, explain to the students that we will learn about fractions and then read the children's literature book, [Give Me Half] by Stuart J. Murphy. After reading this book, question the students about what they thought of the sharing that occurred in this story. Do they think it was fair? Were the amounts equal? What would we do if there were three children in the story. How would the food be divided? Ask the students to look at the T-chart again and see if they can add anything to it. This activity is used as a formative assessment of student's knowledge of fractions. Formative feedback must be given.

Gaining Knowledge:
3. Group students into groups of five students and hand out pattern blocks for each group to use. On the overhead use pattern blocks and teach the students about 1 whole, 1/2, 1/4, and 1/3. As you show them the fractions and how they join to make a whole, allow the students to attempt these with the pattern blocks at their desks.
Roam the room to be certain that each student is understanding this concept and to give individual formative feedback. Have other students assist those who are having difficulty.

4. Next, read the children's book, [Fraction Fun] by David A. Adler to reinforce the concept of fractional parts of a whole, 1/2 ,1/3, and 1/4 and to introduce the terminology of numerator and denominator. This book will also cover how we use fractions in everyday life. Only read up to the activities section.

5. Using the overhead projector, model how to properly read a fraction. Use the fractions: 1/2, 1/3, 2/3, 1/4, 2/4, and 3/4.

Using Knowledge:
6. Guiding the students in the computer lab and have them practice their new fraction skills by doing the activity at the following Websites:
7. Back in the classroom- Explain to the students that they will be making pizzas to practice their fraction skills. Hand out three paper plates to each student, along with three different colored crayons, pencil, and ruler. Make certain the students write their names on the back of the plates. Have the students draw a line with their ruler across the paper plate through the dot in the middle of the plate that you previously made. You will be showing the students each step at the front of the room so they are able to divide the plate correctly. Ask the students to color in 1/2 of this pizza. After this is completed, the students will show their plates to you by lifting them up above their heads. On the second plate, show the students how to draw three lines from the center line to divide the plate into three even pieces. Ask them to color in 1/3 of this pizza. Finally, show the students how to divide the plate into 4 equal parts, making two perpendicular lines through the plate's center. Ask them to color in 1/4 of the pizza. Roam the room to be sure the students understand the fraction of the pizza they are making. After the students are done with this activity, and time permitting, they may add toppings to their pizzas with crayons. This project will be displayed in the classroom on a bulletin board which is divided into sections of 1/2, 1/3, and 1/4. The students will assist you in grouping and placing the plates into the correct section to further reinforce this concept.

Applying Knowledge:
8. Students will go home and look at how they use fractions in their home. Students will create a short list of this for a brainstorming session the next day.

Day 2:
9. On another sheet of the T-chart, ask the students for their brainstorming ideas of where fractions were found at their home.
This reinforces the concept of finding real world fractions previously discussed in the book [Fraction Fun] by David A. Adler. Also, please see Extensions below for a future lesson related to a Language Arts standard.

10. Provide the activity sheet similar to what students practiced on the Internet to assess their skills at naming fractions. (See associated file.)

11. Go back to the original T-chart and review or add any more information that has been learned. Review all the information on the chart with students orally defining the terms listed. Formative feedback will be given as individuals participate in this review.


This lesson offers several formative assessments. The students will be assessed in a variety of ways.
1. A question and answer period will result from each of the books read and should be formatively assessed.
2. Students will be assessed from observations made by the teacher during the pattern block assignment.
3. Additional teacher observations will be made during the Internet assignment to provide assessment of the material learned and recorded on attached rubric. (See associated file.)
4. Students will be assessed on their abilities to complete in a satisfactory manner the activity sheet which assesses their abilities in naming fractions.
5. Students will be assessed in their abilities to successfully complete the Fractional Pizza Activity with the use of a rubric. (See associated file.)
6. Observation assessment will be made during closing T-chart discussion.


1. An additional Children's literature book for this topic is [Eating Fractions] by Bruce McMillan. This is a picture book about how two children divide common foods into fractions of 1/2, 1/3, and 1/4. It teaches the concept of a part using concrete examples to which children can relate.

2. Follow-up games and more in-depth fraction terms at:
Math.Com> The World of Math Online .

3. Follow-up practice at:
All About Fractions .

4. Use Jump Start Adventures 3rd Grade computer software for fraction practice.

5. Have students monitor fractions the next time their family eats pizza. Parents can assist by cutting pizza into eight equal pieces and as it is eaten, students can name the fraction that is left or eaten.

6. This standard can be taught using the following extension to the above lesson:
Explain to the students that they will write an essay to the prompt: I use fractions everyday in my life. This will be assessed as an FCAT essay response. Students will share these essays with their classmates.
Rubric for assessment of this lesson is located in the associated file.

Web Links

Web supplement for Hello Fractions!
Identify Fractions

Web supplement for Hello Fractions!
Fraction Definitions

Web supplement for Hello Fractions!
Fraction Practice

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