Education Technology

Number and Operation Sense: Rational Numbers

Published on 06/09/2008

Activity Overview

Students learn to use the calculator to collect a set of data in order to identify patterns that illustrate important rational number concepts: the relationship between rational numbers and division, and equivalent fraction and decimal forms for rational numbers.

Before the Activity

  • See the attached PDF file for detailed instructions for this activity
  • Print pages 21 - 29 from the attached PDF file
  • During the Activity

    Distribute the pages to the class.

    Follow the activity procedure:

  • Choose a divisor to use with a variety of dividends
  • Explore the different forms in which the quotient can be displayed on the calculator
  • Make a chart to record each of the quotients in integer quotient with remainder form, non-simplified fraction form, simplified fraction form, mixed number form, and decimal form
  • Organize the information in the chart by ordering the dividends and look for patterns
  • Write down three patterns seen in the chart to share and discuss
  • Make a conjecture based on that pattern and then use the calculator to test the conjecture
  • Try several dividends with a given divisor and then try the same set of dividends with another divisor
  • Support or disapprove statements related to rational numbers and operations
  • Use other elementary school activities to develop an understanding of rational numbers and rational number operations
  • After the Activity

    Review students results and re-teach concepts as necessary.