Lesson plan

3. Represent division with rational numbers on number line (C)

teaches Common Core State Standards CCSS.Math.Content.7.NS.A.2b http://corestandards.org/Math/Content/7/NS/A/2/b
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Lesson objective: Divide negative numbers by representing problems on the number line.

From 7.NS.A.2a, students bring prior knowledge of representing multiplication with negative numbers on the number line. This prior knowledge is extended to dividing with negative numbers as students rewrite division equations as multiplication equations. A conceptual challenge students may encounter is understanding that the "rules" for multiplying with negatives are not simply arbitrary facts to memorize but they follow naturally from their understanding of the number line.

Work with the number line helps students deepen their understanding of operations because they will be able to discover the patterns or "rules" for dividing with negative numbers (i.e., a positive divided by a negative is a negative, a negative divided by a positive is negative, and a negative divided by a negative is positive).

Students engage in Mathematical Practice 7 (Look for and make use of structure) as they extend their knowledge of the number line to include dividing with negative numbers and notice patterns in their work.

Key vocabulary:

  • opposite

Special materials needed:

  • number lines