Fixing Misconceptions in Fractions




It can be incredibly frustrating to us as teachers when we spend time teaching a concept only to find that the students don’t seem to have understood any of it. Fractions is one concept that consistently proves difficult for students to understand. Sure, as long as the question is simple enough and it hasn’t been too long since we taught it then they can do the equations, but they forget it all very quickly and we have to start from scratch every time.

This book provides answers to two questions asked by upper primary and lower secondary teachers alike:

Why don’t kids get fractions?


How can we fix it?

This intervention program has been designed as a targeted approach to catch kids up on multiple years of fraction concepts that ideally should have been developed in primary school, but which I have found are often missing for students in secondary school. It draws on my experiences of supporting hundreds of teachers in both primary and secondary contexts to figure out exactly what is going wrong and then fix it in the smallest amount of time possible. Our latest pilot project with Education Queensland produced significant improvements in results in only eight lessons.

Inside you will find diagnostic tasks to uncover misconceptions that are holding kids back from understanding fractions as well as lessons with unique confrontational questions to fix misconceptions for good.

These lessons will show you how to lead kids to abandon their wrong ideas and figure out how fractions work for themselves so that they really understand them and don’t forget what we are teaching.

The teaching process specified within this program is very different from the explanation and practice process used by most of the teachers that I have worked with. Problem-based teaching is designed to make kids work out concepts for themselves rather than relying on them remembering our explanations. If the standard teaching approach for fractions has not worked for the kids who we are teaching then we need to do something different. This intervention program will show you how.

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