In third grade, students focused on fractions with denominators 2, 3, 4, 6, and 8. In fourth grade, students are introduced to fractions with denominators 10 and 100.
Using base ten blocks can help students see how a fraction with the denominator of 100 can be equivalent to a fraction with a denominator of 10.
Denominators 10 & 100
The image below shows a model we are familiar with. We use the model on the left in second and third grade as students model whole numbers.
Now that they reach fourth grade, we use this same model to represent one whole. Each little square is one-hundredth. Why? Because you need 100 of those little squares to equal one. 100/100 = 1
The model on the right shows the rods which now have a value of a tenth. Why? You will need ten of those rods to make one, so each rod is one tenth of the whole. 10/10 = 1
If you have a group of students who are having a difficult time understanding this concept, create a small group and use this resource as review. It’s part of a free download at the end of this blog post.
Use this second worksheet to review comparing fractions. Students who look at the fraction 17/100 and think it’s greater than 3/10 may only be focusing on the numerator. Use the models to help students create fractions with the same denominator in order to compare them.
Free Adding Fractions Printable
Now that students are able to change a fraction with denominator 10 to an equivalent fraction with denominator 100, they are ready to move on to adding fractions.
The example above shows an opportunity to discuss the Identity Property of Multiplication. How is multiplying 3/10 by 10/10 similar as when you multiply a number by 1?
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