Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Fraction of a Fraction Word Problems

One of my student teacher doing his practicum has found that teaching topics that has been dealt with by his classmates during micro-teaching to be easier. This is a good reminder to me as a teacher educator of the importance of micro-teaching in a teacher preparatory programme.
Somehow, students find difficulties in solving the word problems related to the topic of fraction of a fraction. To be more specific, they have problems with tasks such: Ben sold 7/12 of his poultry. Of his unsold poultry, 3/5 were chickens and the rest were ducks. What fraction of the all the poultry were the unsold ducks?

Students have difficulties with the word remaining. Although most of them can solve it easily using the model method, some cannot understand the remaining part when asked to solve it just by using a number sentence.

Posed by Khai
This situation is a reminder why it is important to use pictorial representation (such as the model method) before moving on to symblic ones (number sentence method). The model method is a good link to the abstract number sentence. I would advise teachers to continue to use diagrams to model the situations and leave it to students to make the leap to the abstract symbolic representation. The situation posed is a good starting point. For advanced students, the 3/5 can be changed to say 7/10.

1 comment:

  1. ben sold 7/12 of his poultry. of his remaining poultry, 3/5were chickens and the rest were ducks. what fraction of all the poultry was the unsold ducks?