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Big Ideas:
There are multiple ways to model and calculate the quotients of fractions.
Fraction division can be used to find how many times one quantity is contained in a given quantity or how much of one part fits into another.
This lesson focuses on the concept of dividing fractions with unlike denominators. Students are given a task in which the divisor and dividend cannot be modeled equivalently unless a common denominator is found. Students need to make a connection between common factors and multiples in order to find a common denominator before modeling the problem (the divisor may or may not fit into the dividend evenly). Students will have to visually represent the remainder using a model. Students then determine what the value of the remainder is based upon the context of the problem. The mathematical concepts in this lesson build toward students’ future work recognizing the need for an efficient method of dividing fractions.
Vocabulary: numerator, denominator, quotient
Special Materials:
unifix cubes
graph paper
fraction strips