Hi Cindy, I totally hear what you're saying when it comes to the blank stares over fractions. I use a LOT of different hands on activities to build the students' understanding of fractions and how they work. Just last week I had a group of students "playing" with fractions towers in an open-exploration (mind you that this is a month after beginning learning about equivalent fractions, which they can all do on paper,) and one of my students excitedly called me over. What did she have to show me? That four of the eighths blocks was the same height as two of the quarter blocks. This was a BIG discovery to her, even though she had already seen equivalent fractions in so many different ways and could ostensibly calculate equivalent fractions. Sometimes kids just need to see it in yet another way to have their a-ha moment, especially for fractions, it seems. So, LEGO may be the catalyst for some of your students - I hope it works for you! I'd love to know how it goes next year.
All the best,
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