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Week 13

April 25, 2013

This week we were to teach our lesson, post a write up of our lesson (which can be found in week 12), a visual to showing pre and post test results, three artifacts and our reflections.

As a teacher I am meeting NETS-T standard which is to:

Provide students with multiple and varied formative and summative assessments aligned with content and technology standards and use resulting data to inform learning and teaching

Here is the lesson:

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

Grade Level: 1st

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   four 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 VoiceThread.

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.


This visual shows the pretest results.:


The reason why there are three separate tests for the pretest is because when I gave the assignment to draw as many examples from everyday life showing 1/2 and 1/4 (even though I suggested time and money), I did not get any examples of time or money. I also did not get any examples from everyday life. My pretest turned out to be an assessment only for standard G1.3 because the only answers I got were of circles and rectangles divided into one half and one fourth (even though I suggested using things such as time and money). A few students were able to draw one of two things or two of four things to show 1/2. So I gave a quiz that assessed telling time to the half hour and a separate quiz that assessed counting money (see week 12 post for photo of high, medium and low levels of understanding). The pretests show that most students can tell time to the half hour and most can accurately identify coins and their value. They know when to make a trade (5 pennies for a nickel, 10 pennies for a dime), yet they did not see time and money as related to fractions and they could not come up with a real life example. So my challenge this week was to help my first graders make connections.

Post Test Results based on the rubric:

Post test

The post test results show that all students have increased their level of understanding. I graded each student individually based on their performance using the rubric. Many  more students are meeting the AK Standards addressed in the lesson.

I created a little ShowMe tutorial of my own and shared it with my students to give students some ideas. I explained that they would be working together in groups to create a ShowMe about 1/2 and 1/4 in everyday life.

I typed up a little letter to parents explaining that we would be focusing our Show & Tells for this week on examples of 1/2 and 1/4 in everyday  life. As student brought in their examples, I would take a photo of it and put it in a VoiceThread. As they shared with the class, they also created a slide for a class VoiceThread. The VoiceThread we created is called 1/2 and 1/4  in Everyday Life.

This week we did a great deal of finding and sharing examples of 1/2 and 1/4. Students worked together in their groups to build models of 1/2 and 1/4. Some students experimented with other fractions as well.  Students took pictures of their creations using an IPad. After working through several technical difficulties, each group did complete the ShowMe. The students enjoyed watching themselves on the screen as I played them back.

You can view the ShowMe by clicking on the following links:

We Love Math

Fractions 1/2, 1/4

Fractions, Time and Money

Fractions in Real Life

It is hard for me to choose a high, medium and low because in each one, you will see high levels of understanding as well as some misconceptions and errors. If I had to choose, I think I would pick Fractions in Real Life as the high because they were confident, they used a variety of representations and explanations. I would give the Fractions 1/2, 1/4 a medium high. They did some great representations of fractions, but there were also some misconceptions within the group and some difficulty with the explanations. I give We Love Math a medium ranking. The Fractions, Time and Money would be my pick for a low because they had some misconceptions and two of the three group members seemed very unsure about their explanations.

The most challenging thing for me was making the recordings. When creating a ShowMe, you can start and stop, but I have yet to discover a way to edit without recreating the whole thing. It was challenging to work with one group and keep the others occupied doing something quietly and independently.

I had problems with the VoiceThread as well. For some reason, it was not always recording the voices when the students worked at the Promethean Board. I loved using the Promethean Board because the whole class could see and it is easier for students to draw with the pen than with a mouse. I used my Ipad for some, but was unable to figure out how to change the identities. The teacher computer in the lab always worked great except for the last day I tried it, the voice was not recording. So… the kids did great. They were always anxious to have a turn. The learning curve for me was frustrating at times, but we all need something to keep up humble.

There will always be a learning curve when we try new things and technical difficulties are a fact of life. If we can work through them, we can begin to reap the benefits of our efforts. Because I used the Ipad with a new app., my students were highly motivated. Because I recorded their explanations, I have a record of the vocabulary they used, how confident they were, as well as any misconceptions they had. Because they worked together as a team, there was a great deal of sharing and discussion during all phases of the project. Because I published the  finished ShowMe videos, other first grade students can see it and comment on it. I have shared the links with my PLN. I would like to watch the videos again with my class after a few weeks have passed. Maybe some people will have added comments. Even if there are no new comments, I will be curious to see if anyone’s thinking has changed.


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