This activity starts with drawings of rectangles and circles divided into fractional parts for students to shade to illustrate a mixed number. They then can count the parts to yield the improper fraction. The students state in writing each mathematical step which is illustrated and can then follow the sequence they themselves have written to convert the mixed number into an improper fraction using the mathematical process.
The same is presented in reverse for conversion of improper fractions to mixed numbers – students write the illustrated steps, and then apply the mathematical steps in order.
For each process, there are 4 pages of problems on which students both shade and write out each math step to convert mixed numbers, with a variety of denominators. There’s also a blank set of pages which teachers can copy and provide their own problems. These numbers are all less than 8.
A set of detailed notes on how I implement these activities is included.
This is an update of an activity I posted about a year ago, which included only the mixed number to improper fraction sequence.
Common Core Standards:
4.NF.3.c: “Add and subtract mixed numbers…by replacing each mixed number with an equivalent fraction….”
(This is the only standard which mentions conversions of mixed numbers and improper fractions.)
Subjects: Math, Fractions, Measurement
Level: Grades 3-5
Duration: 16 pages of student work, open-ended
Answer Key: included
A Smart Notebook 10 file is included. Click on the .zip icon and you can open both the PDF and Notebook files separately.