Unwrapping Students’ Ideas about Fractions

  • Unwrapping Students’ Ideas about Fractions

    Rebecca M. Lewis, Lynsey K. Gibbons, Elham Kazemi, and Teresa Lind
    Sandwiching formative assessment items and instruction can yield insight into why students use particular strategies or notation.
    Supporting students to develop an understanding of the meaning of fractions is an important goal of elementary school mathematics (NCTM 2000; CCSSI 2010) (see the sidebar on p. 168). This involves developing partitioning strategies, creating representations, naming fractional quantities, and using symbolic notation. This article describes how teachers can use a formative assessment problem to elicit and understand students’ ideas about the meaning of fractions.