We all know that fractions are a big part of mathematics, but how many of us really understand why? In this blog post, we’ll explore what fractions represent and how mastering them can show a strong understanding of number sense. We’ll also take a look at our programs for helping kids learn fractions in a way that makes sense to them. So read on if you are looking to help kids with their fraction skills or simply want to understand this important mathematics concept better!
Fractions Can Be Scary!
Fractions can often seem like a daunting concept, especially at a young age when fractions are first introduced. However, fractions are actually just a way to represent parts of a whole or ratio between two quantities. When broken down into smaller steps, fractions become much easier to work with and understand.
First, it is important to have a solid understanding of basic arithmetic operations such as addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division. From there, fractions can be thought of as “special” divisions where the bottom number represents the total number of equal parts the whole has been divided into, and the top number represents how many of those parts we are dealing with.
Understanding fractions is essential in further studying mathematics and real-world applications such as cooking measurements and financial budgets. Don’t let fractions deflate your child’s confidence – with some practice, they can become just another tool in their mathematical toolkit.
Math Builds Upon Itself
If your child seems to enjoy learning fractions and grasping the concepts, they will most likely have a strong understanding of number sense. However, if they are struggling to understand the concept of fractions, they may need to take a step back and revisit number sense.
Many assume that math is a subject where individual concepts can be easily isolated and learned without prior knowledge. However, this assumption ignores the fact that much of math builds upon itself – number sense, for example, is crucial for understanding fractions. The intuitive understanding of numbers and their relationships lays the foundation for learning about fractions and how to manipulate them. Without this foundation, it can be difficult for a student to grasp the concept of a fraction and how it relates to whole numbers.
It is important for educators not only to identify and address gaps in a student’s number sense understanding but also to consistently reinforce these basic skills throughout all levels of math education. A student may struggle with more advanced mathematical concepts without number sense as the foundational basis.
At Dropkick Math Academy, our programs are focused around the four pillars of math (number sense, operational sense, algebraic reasoning, and proportional reasoning). This allows our teachers to ensure every child understands the root of all math operations.
What Is Number Sense?
As we mentioned, if your child is struggling with fractions, they are most likely experiencing a gap in learning in number sense. But what exactly is number sense?
Number sense is understanding the quantity represented by a number. It is not the same as numeracy, which is the ability to do calculations. Number sense develops gradually. For example, a baby starts by recognizing that they see one person or two people. By the time they start school, they can count up to 20 or more. They learn what numbers mean in terms of amounts and quantities. This knowledge forms the foundation for learning more complex math concepts later on.
Research has shown that children build on their number sense by learning connections among whole numbers, percentages, decimals, and fractions. This can ultimately deepen their understanding of ratio and proportionality.
An extensive study from The College Student Achievement Project found that understanding fractions is one of the most critical skills needed for college mathematics in both technology and business. However, it was noted that fractions are one of the main areas where students lacked the necessary understanding. This shows a significant gap in learning and missed opportunities for students in their math education.
Dropkick Math Fraction Programs
Learning fractions and number sense go hand in hand, which is why we offer programs like Fractions & Knights of the Whole Table. This program centers around improving a child’s number sense and proportional reasoning skills with fractions.
We understand that fractions are one of the greatest barriers to math success and one of children’s leading causes of math anxiety. Our goal is to improve your child’s understanding, skills and confidence when using fractions. By giving them the confidence they need to battle the knights and sorcerers, they can overcome the stress of learning mathematics.
Once your child masters the basics of fractions, they can move on to the next program, Becoming A Fraction Hero with Operations. Here, they will work specifically with adding and subtracting fractions with like and unlike denominators. They will also work with multiplying and dividing fractions with whole numbers.
With the help of heroes like Captain Struggle, your child will master the four pillars (number sense, operational sense, algebraic reasoning, proportional reasoning) using fractions all the way along. In this program, turning your child’s uncertainty into confidence will save the world and make homework struggles a thing of the past!
We Take Fractions Seriously!
As you can tell, we take learning fractions seriously! We want all children to succeed in mathematics and understand that the four pillars of math are at the root of understanding all math concepts. All of our programs address gaps in learning in these four pillars to ensure a child’s success as they learn future equations.
One of the key ways to achieve success is to give your children a strong foundation in education. In our math help services, our certified Ontario teachers will work with your child to ensure they understand math concepts and don’t just memorize one way of accomplishing them.
All of our programs are virtual, and we have new classes starting regularly. Learn more about our math tutoring services today by visiting our website.