Lesson plan

Decompose a fraction into a sum of fractions using number lines

teaches Common Core State Standards CCSS.Math.Content.4.NF.B.3a http://corestandards.org/Math/Content/4/NF/B/3/a
teaches Common Core State Standards CCSS.Math.Content.4.NF.B.3b http://corestandards.org/Math/Content/4/NF/B/3/b

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Big Ideas: A fraction is a number which appears as a specific point on a number line. Fractions can be expressed as a sum of unit fractions. Unit fractions are one equal part of a whole. When adding unit fractions, the numerators will increase and denominators will stay constant. This lesson builds on fractions along with visual fraction models to represent equal parts of a whole. This task uses a string bead bracelet to highlight composition and decomposition of fractions and number sentences. Students explore fraction equivalence through the decomposition of non-unit and unit fractions. Students decompose fractions using number lines to represent them as sums of fractions with the same denominator in different ways. By leaving the task open ended, students reason why there are different possibilities for the design of the bracelet. The mathematics in this lesson build toward students' future work creating visual models to show the addition and subtraction of fractions and mixed numbers with like denominators. Vocabulary: unit fraction composing fractions decomposing fractions number line tick mark numerator denominator equal parts Special Materials: colored pencils (optional)