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Week 12 How to show impact on student learning #diffimooc

April 15, 2013

This week the essential question is: How will I demonstrate impact on student learning as a result of my differentiated lesson?

In my last post, I stated my theory that students learn to identify 1/2 and 1/4 as a shaded part of a circle or square in much the same way they learn to identify the shape of a triangle, square or circle. They can identify it, but can they tell you more about it? Can tell about the attributes or make connections to the real world? To find out, I gave my students a pretest. I gave them a blank piece of paper and asked them to tell me about all the ways they could think of to show 1/2 or 1/4. They could make a list, draw or write words to tell me about where they might find 1/2 or 1/4 in every day life. The reason I used paper and pencil for the pretest is that it was much more efficient. My students are not familiar with the Show Me app.  at this point, so even though I want to introduce it as a way for them to showcase their final project, I chose not to use it for a pretest.

This is what I got:


a) 1/2 with no shading  b) 1/2 and 1/4 shaded in a variety of shapes   c) 1/2 of a rectangle shaded, 1/2 as 2/4 of a rectangle, 1/2 as 2 of 4 circles and 1/4 of a circle shaded.

The pretest samples show a range of understanding. Student a drew the least, student b did better and student c was able to draw a variety of ways to represent 1/2, however none of the students gave a real life example.

Based on these results, my theory seems correct. I decided my students could use some help with making some connections to the real world. I was a little surprised that there were no examples of a half an hour, since we do time to the half hour as part of our calendar routine now. We have also talked about quarters being 1/4 of a dollar.

I showed my students the two YouTube videos that I posted last week just to give them some ideas. I gave them a show & tell assignment, which was that next week the show & tells had to be an example of 1/2 or 1/4. I am hoping to take a photo of some of the examples and get students to tell about on Voice Thread. They can also use it as part of their group Show Me. This is also a way for me do do some formative assessment prior to the final project.

Here is my lesson plan:

Title: Real Life Examples of ½ and 1/4th – Making Connections

Grade Level: 1st

Alaska Standards Adressed:

Alaska Standards for Mathematical Practice:

3. Construct viable arguments and critique the reasoning of others.

      In grades K-2 mathematically proficient students will:

  • construct arguments using concrete referents such as objects, drawings, diagrams, and actions
  • justify conclusions, communicate conclusions
  • listen to arguments and decide whether the arguments make sense

4. Model with mathematics.

      In grades K-2 mathematically proficient students will:

  • apply mathematics to solve problems in everyday life
  • identify important quantities in a practical situation and model the situation with manipulatives or pictures                     
  • interpret mathematical results in the context of the situation and reflect on whether the results make sense

Alaska Math Content Standards:

Work with time and money.

                        1.MD.3 Tell and write time in half hours using both analog and digital clocks.

1.MD.5. Recognize and read money symbols including $ and ¢.

1.MD.6. Identify values of coins (e.g., nickel = 5 cents, quarter = 25 cents). Identify equivalent values of coins up to $1 (e.g., 5 pennies = 1 nickel, 5 nickels = 1 quarter).


1.G.3. Partition circles and rectangles into two and four equal shares. Describe the shares using the words, halves, fourths, and quarters and phrases half of, fourth of and quarter of. Describe the whole as two of or our of the shares. Understand for these examples that decomposing (break apart) into more equal shares creates smaller shares.

            AK Speaking and Listening Standards

                        1. Participate in collaborative conversations with diverse partners about grade 1 topics and texts with peers and adults in small and larger groups.

a. Follow agreed-upon rules for discussions (e.g., listening to others with care, speaking one at a time about the topics and texts under discussion).

b. Build on others’ talk in conversations by responding to the comments of others through multiple exchanges.

2. Ask and answer questions about key details in a text read aloud or information presented orally or through other media.

5. Add drawings or other visual displays to descriptions when appropriate to clarify ideas, thoughts, and feelings.

Objectives: Students will work collaboratively to demonstrate the meaning of ½ and ¼ using real life examples including time and money.

Materials: photos, coins, one dollar bill, paper, pencils, base ten blocks, pattern  blocks, clock face, IPad with the Show Me app., access to Voice Thread.

Anticipatory Set:

Show the following You Tube videos to get students thinking about examples of ½ and ¼ in the real world and in their everyday life.

Fractions in everyday life can be found at:

Fractions of the World can be found at:


Continue to show examples of ½ and ¼ using money and time in the daily calendar routine.

Show teacher created Show Me and explain that students will be working together in groups to make their own Show Me.

Demonstrate how to make a Show Me recording.

Guided Practice:

Invite students to try the Show Me app. It can be projected onto the Promethean Board with the document camera. As students work in their groups, teacher assists one group at a time with making a practice Show Me.

Independent Practice:

Ask students to bring in examples of ½ or ¼ for show & tell. After students share with the class, ask them to make a voice thread explaining their show & tell. This will be ongoing throughout the week.

Students work together as a group to brainstorm ideas for making a Show Me. They can draw, take photos of real objects, or make a model. When the group is ready, the teacher will provide support in making the Show Me recording.

Closure: Groups of students will share their examples with the class.

The Show Me recordings and Voice Thread will be published and hopefully shared with another class in a different school.


Pretest – Students were given paper and pencil and asked to list, draw or explain with words examples of ½ and ¼ they find in their daily lives.

Post-test – Using the Show Me app. on the IPad, a group of students will create a recording that will demonstrate understanding of ½ and ¼ using examples from everyday life including time and money.

Both the pretest and post-test can be scored using the rubric.


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