BackBright Hub EducationBrowse

Lesson on Fractions Using Colored Circles

By Kathy Foust

This lesson plan shows students how to number equal parts.

The Whole of the Equal Parts: Teaching Fractions

By now,students should be able to identify equal parts. In this lesson plan we will again practice identifying equal parts, but we are also going to make the whole of the equal parts. For this math lesson plan you will need the items listed below.

  • Paper cutter and a pair of scissors for the teacher.
  • A piece of construction paper in the following colors for each student; orange, pink, purple, yellow, blue and green.
  • A pair of scissors for each student.
  • A pattern of a circle for each student. These should all be the same size.

Have the students trace and cut the pattern of the circle on each of the pieces of construction paper. Ask students to write their names on the back of each circle. Now have students bring all of the circles up to you except for the pink one so they can be cut into exact equal parts. The paper cutter will be the fastest and most accurate way to cut all of them except for the yellow one. Cut the circles as listed below.

  1. Purple: Cut into 2 pieces so that the circle is cut in half.
  2. Yellow: Cut into 3 equal parts.
  3. Orange: Cut into 4 equal parts.
  4. Blue: Cut into 6 equal parts.
  5. Green: Cut into 8 equal parts.

Return the circles to the students. Ask the students to put together each color circle. As they do this, ask students the following questions.

  • Which circle has only one equal part?
  • Which circle has 2 equal parts?
  • Which circle has 3 equal parts?
  • Which circle has 4 equal parts?
  • Which circle has 6 equal parts?
  • Which circle has 8 equal parts?

Students may notice that some of the circles can have interchangeable parts. For example, you can replace one of the yellow pieces with 2 of the blue ones and still get a circle, but they will not be equal parts. Encourage students to play with their circles and prepare to move on to the next lesson plan.