Date: Jul 2, 1995 2:02 AM
Author: NKreider@aol.com
Subject: Re: dropped topics(fractions in elem.)
As a fifth grade teacher who spent an inordinate amount of time on fractions

this year, I don't think they need to be dropped out of our elementary

curriculum, just taught and emphasized differently.

The instruction of fractions in elementary school should be almost completely

manipulative based. I modified my weekly schedule so I taught math two days a

week, three hours each day. I spent two hours exploring concepts with

manipulatives in cooperative groups, and modelling the "paper process" of

what they did. Then I gave students paper and they did both manipulatives and

paper to work the problem. Finally, when they were successful, (sometimes the

next day) I would have them use paper to predict then manipulatives to prove

their answer. Students loved this approach and although some continue to

struggle with the often long involved process of calculating fractions, they

can all perform the function at some level.

I think it is a good foundation for the complex math they will encounter in

7th and on. My students loved the challenge when given the supports they

needed to be successful.

Noelle Kreider

Rialto Unified, CA