When teaching my fifth graders how to add and subtract fractions with unlike denominators, I use this scaffolding paper. The first problem is almost finished, the second problem has a little more of the fractions steps taken away, the third problem has more of the fractions steps taken away, and the fourth problem is students solving it completely by themselves. After they finish this,we usually tape it into our notes section so they can have examples of how to add and subtract fractions with unlike denominators.
One of my students told me it was like "learning to ride a bike." Because at first your parents hold on tight, then you get training wheels, and suddenly you are on your own. I loved that analogy!
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More from Grade 5 Greatness:
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Classroom Academic Games
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