Converting Fractions to Percents
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Discussion for Converting Fractions to Percents
Anna Cajiga (Teacher (K-12))
This lesson uses visualizer/document camera technology to support learning. The visualizer/document camera is used to visually demonstrate how to convert fractions into decimals and percents using both a calculator and pen and pencil. This helps support students as they prepare to attempt the task independently. This technology most definitely supports visual learners, and the large screen display may also serve as an assistive technology to students who may have special needs.
Another strength of this lesson is that it uses a great attention-getting strategy of asking students to use fraction-decimal conversion skills to solve an authentic math problem involving candy.
I was not familiar with Scholastic's Funny Bone series of books, but this lesson prompted me to learn more about the series on Amazon.com. Through these books, students use math to find the answer to a funny riddle. This activity in itself would be very motivating to students as it offers pleasant consequences (using math allows them to solve the riddle) and is a novelty (attention-getting and humorous).
To improve this lesson, I would love to see more face to face instructional strategies being used. For example, BrainPop offers an educational video that could be used to introduce the topic, remediate as necessary, or to reach a wider variety of learning styles. There are also several engaging online games that could be used to practice these skills (One great example is found at http://www.mrnussbaum.com/death_decimals/index.html). Perhaps more advanced students could also be challenged with an additional task, such as creating their own riddles that must be solved by converting fractions to decimals and percents. The riddles they create could then be published on a classwebsite or blog.
This lesson plan is easy to understand and use. There are no glitches in this material. The only technologies that needs to be available in the classroom to successfully implement the lesson are a visualizer/document camera and a projector.
Please note that this lesson does require that teacher has access to Scholastic book - "Decimals & Percents Practice Puzzles: 40 Reproducible Solve-the-Riddle Activity Pages That Help All Kids Master Decimals and Percents" for student activity.
Justine Koszela (Teacher (K-12))
This lesson meets the requirements of goal directed design and instructional design principals which is important for grasping, motivating and keeping students on track. There is a real world need addressed which is having students convert fractions into percents. I felt that the lesson could have begun by having a great introduction, such as asking students if they would like “1/2 a cup of pop, or 50% of the cup filled.” This would be a great way to get their attention, start an important conversion and get student’s interest. The objectives were stated in the beginning of the lesson, and students got a chance to take the information and apply it with a calculator and Jolly Ranchers, which address the UDL Principals. The material could have been presented in more ways, such as in a video from YouTube. There are many on YouTube that can be used in the classroom, and then the teacher can stop along the way to make teaching points. Having a calculator on the document reader is a good way to provide visuals for students, another UDL principal. I also did enjoy the way that the Scholastic riddles were incorporated and used in the lesson. It’s a great way to make fractions fun!
The technology is pretty basic and easy to use for any teacher/student. Only a document reader, screen and calculators are needed for this lesson. This lesson does allow for more technology to be integrated and easily used as well.