Fractions with Friends is such a simple and fun group activity for teaching fractions of a set.
Here’s How It Works
First, break students into groups. When I do this, I do different sized groups. I might have a group of 3, a group of 4, two groups of 5, etc. (I don’t recommend making a group larger than 6.)
Then, I have each student draw themselves on their group’s poster. They have to draw themselves how they are looking that day. (Clothing, hair, etc). Set a timer for this.
Next I tell them they need to write fractions to describe their group of friends. I give examples so they know what I am looking for. (i.e., 2/3 of the group are boys. 1/3 is a girl.) Students will become very observant. They might notice everyone in the group is wearing khaki, even if one person has on pants and the others have on skirts. Students can also create fractions based on their interests, and not just their appearance for the day.
If you do this activity, I recommend using a large poster board so the students have time to write down a lot of fractions.
Also, I tell my students that everyone in the group has to contribute at least two fractions and that their handwriting must be on the poster.
IMPORTANT!! I never tell my students what their denominator should be. Since they are all in different sized groups, they will have to decide what their group’s denominator should be.
When students have had enough time to work, I have them quickly present their poster to the class. Then as a reflection, they write on a piece of paper about their assignment. I ask them to explain how they determined what their denominator should be, and what they contributed to the poster.