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Adding Improper Fractions Games

Instructor: Clio Stearns

Clio has taught education courses at the college level and has a Ph.D. in curriculum and instruction.

Learning to add improper fractions is no small task for students. You'll want to make sure your students remain engaged as you teach this important skill. This lesson offers some games you can include in your addition of improper fractions unit.

Teaching About Fractions

Are you in the middle of a fractions unit with your students? This can be a really complicated aspect of upper elementary or early middle school math because students have to keep track of so many different strategies and concepts as they make sense of what fractions are and how they work.

You will probably devote some time to helping your students understand improper fractions, or fractions greater than one whole. Once students know what improper fractions are, they will learn how to use them with the basic operations.

If you are teaching students about addition with improper fractions, you will probably want to include some games that can help them practice and master the concepts and strategies involved. The games in this lesson will keep students engaged and active as they learn how to add improper fractions.

Roll It

This is a fun game that requires two partners to play. They will practice adding fractions in general and get extra points for improper fractions.

Assign each partnership a denominator to start with, explaining that denominators will stay consistent during the first round of play. Give each partnership a pair of dice. Partner A will roll the dice first. Each number rolled becomes a numerator, and she must add the resulting fractions together.

For example, if a pair is working with the denominator '3' and Partner A rolls a '2' and a '6,' she must add 2/3 + 6/3. A player gets one point for every accurate sum and an additional point for every improper fraction among the addends. Player A thus has the potential to earn two points for solving the above problem correctly.

The partners should play for 5-7 minutes, keeping track of their points, before you switch their denominators. To make the game more challenging, give each partnership four dice so that the denominators also vary with each roll; this will mean they have to add fractions with unlike denominators as well.

Silent Improper Fraction Search

This game is good to use as a warm-up or if you are interested in getting your whole class involved in something together.

Write a series of addition equations that involve improper fractions and their sums. Then, cut them up so that each resulting paper only has one fraction on it; it is either an addend or a sum. Try to end up with the right amount of numbers so that there is one for each student in your class.

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