When my students did the activity, they calculated the total number of pattern blocks used, using both multiplication and addition with fractions. They first had to figure out how many of each block were used and then multiply by the fractional part comprised of that block; so, for example, the total number of green triangles had to be multiplied by 1/6. Then they had to add the numbers for all the blocks together, giving them a total for their pictures. Next, they had to "prove it" by showing the blocks used in their picture, organized so that the total could be easily checked.
Learning intensified when they found that their totals (calculated on paper vs. showing/counting the blocks) didn't match! (This happened to quite a few students.) Usually, they recounted the blocks and came up with the same total. So then they had to go back to the math--multiplying or adding with fractions--and figure out where they went wrong. Lightbulbs were going off so fast the room was ablaze! :)
|Recounting to check fraction operations!|
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