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Lesson Plan

Compare decimals to the tenths and hundredths using understanding of coin values and the symbols >, =, and <

teaches Common Core State Standards CCSS.Math.Content.4.NF.C.7
teaches Common Core State Standards CCSS.Math.Practice.MP3
teaches Common Core State Standards CCSS.Math.Practice.MP7
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Big Ideas: In order to compare decimals, they have to be in the context of the same whole. When comparing decimals, the digit with the highest value, or farthest to the left, needs to be compared first and then work your way to the right. Using knowledge of coin values is one strategy for comparing decimals. This lesson builds on students’ understanding of decimal notation by exploring comparing decimals through students’ knowledge of coin values. Students are presented with average gas prices per gallon for various states and asked to compare the decimal prices. By making a connection between coin values and fractions, students will understand that decimals must be compared within the context of the same whole. The mathematical concepts in this lesson build towards students’ future work with decimals and fractions in grades 5-6. Vocabulary: decimal, comparing, tenths, hundredths, greater than >, less than <, equal to = Special Materials: Money: 10 dimes, 40 pennies, 6 $1 bills for each student Money manipulative handout (optional. see at end of lesson plan in Supplementary Resources) envelope or bag for each student’s money to serve as their personal “bank.” Graph paper (optional for students who find it helpful to line up their decimals to compare) Dry-erase boards (optional) Dry-erase markers & erasers (optional)
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