Clutter-free & Confident: How to divide by fractions (+freebie)

Divide by fractions: 6 divided by ½

has all the children saying:

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Say what?

Confusion tastes stale.

  • “I don’t understand.”
  • “I hate math.”
  • “I’m not good at math.”
  • “I’m just not good with numbers.”

Sound familiar? But it’s not just the words that we’ve heard come from our kids’ mouths, it’s the downcast faces, drooping shoulders, and their deflated bodies in response to yet another concept they “don’t get.”

FLIP THE SCRIPT
What if there was a gentle, palatable, 8-minute video that could stoke understanding? Imagine dividing whole numbers by fractions being a success instead of defeat.

In this clip, math specialist Amy models what it actually looks like. Listen to the language that connects. Questions like, “How many ⅓ pieces make up the number?” get lost in young brains when deprived of the visual. Observe what Amy does in this demo is to partner the visual and auditory. I wonder if this could move us in the right direction? And all the kids say:

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YES!

That’s what this is all about. Moving from “?” to “!”
That’s what we want for our students,
our children, and even ourselves, right?

From confusion to clarity
From Frustration to finding answers

Related: Try out our Stress-Free Fractions course!

That’s possible in these 3 steps (oversimplified and incomplete, I must admit)

  1. Explicit math language
  2. Visuals that show what is happening
  3. A 6ft. Giant Sub.

BRAKES SCREECH
Yes. Dividing whole numbers by fractions and massive sub sandwiches do indeed belong in each other’s lives! Writing about Math can change a person. For instance, now, the six-footer is on my bucket list. Why have I not made space in my life for this yet?!? SMH.

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What have I done with my life?

Instagram Post Template

How many parts will I have? Say what?!? Listen carefully to how we phrase this: “How many pieces the size of ½ can be made of 6?” 6 1/2 = 12 half-foot pieces. Olive oil, salt, pepper, crisp lettuce, and a warm whole-grain bun…That is tasty math.We recently heard one of our students say they had a revelation. The young boy said he wanted to focus on mathematics in college. What we hear behind that statement is…

CONFIDENCE.

Let’s get there together:

  1. Download this FREE printable for your child to complete along with the video
  2. Allow 20 minutes for your student to watch the video and complete the Freebie Page.
  3. Maybe order a giant sub while you do it 🙂

Step 1: Download the Printable

Step 2: Watch the Video

MFM Authors

Matthew Lyda

Matthew Lyda

Multisensory Math Specialist

Matthew is a Blue Belt in Shotokan Karate, a happy husband, wilderness lover, drummer, and a voracious reader! He works with students one:one as well as in group classes. 

Amy Anderson

Amy Anderson

Multisensory Math Specialist; VP of Grades 7-12

my is a certified teacher with a Masters in Educatioon and a Bachelor of Arts.  She enjoys photographing the Pacific Northwest landscapes, walking her dog, rock climbing and searching for humpback whales. She works with students one:one as well in group classes.