Monday, January 19, 2015

Fair Share Fraction Fun

In math we've been working on creating fair shares. You'd think this would be a no brainer for kids since they are always shouting "It's not fair!". They all know when something is not fair, but it takes a lot of modeling and practice for many kids to figure out how to make fair shares. Teachers also spend so much time teaching kids that in life fair doesn't mean everyone gets the same thing, so that totally contradicts fair share in a math sense. After many years of pulling my hair out while teaching fair shares, I finally created some activities that provide modeling, guided practice, and independent practice to ensure fair share success!

We had spent the previous week learning about fractions, so my class already had knowledge of parts of a whole, and equality. Here is a peak of some of our fair share activities.

Whole Group:
We worked on problem solving in small groups to try to determine ways to make fair shares. Each group had a set of pencils. They had to try to figure out how to divide them equally between the group members. As a whole class, we brainstormed ways that you could create fair shares.

I projected these kid mats on the board and used a group of magnets to divide equally. After modeling a few samples we were able to complete a few together as a group. We also learned a Fair Sharing Friends song to help us remember how to divide equally.

Small Group:
These same mats were printed to be used in a small group to provide guided practice. Each student had a group of manipulatives to divide equally between the kids on the mat. Some kids "get" fair shares instantly, but this helped the students that needed to manipulate and see the shares they were making.

We played "Fair Share Friends" by rolling a 12 sided die, dividing that number between two kids, and determining if you could make equal shares.

We also practiced dividing groups of small erasers between the kids in the group.

Independent Practice:
The small group mats became independent centers. I also added share fair task cards as a center.

We did a few printables to practice making fair shares on paper.


The hit of independent work was when students got to create their own Fair Share Book. The concept of not including themselves in the number of friends but including themselves in the sharing took a little modeling, but they had great ideas once they got the hang of it. This book was great for differentiation!

We really had fun with fair shares and everyone really seemed to understand it without me pulling my hair out! Yay!

You can find all of these activities and more here:

1 comment:

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