To start, we began with a basic overview of the conversions. I wish I could take credit for this brilliant visual, but I found it on pinterest. I do not think the original location is known, but you can see it here on pinterest.
Now, to explain the conversions in more detail, we used a blank hundreds grid.
For the first one, I had the students color in 23 squares. Then, I asked them what the number would be as a fraction out of 100. The hundreds grid provided a great visual for this. Next, we moved onto the decimal. We discussed how we could divide the numerator by the denominator, but that with this one, the kids knew it automatically. (We divided to double-check.) For the final step, we identified the percent. We talked about how a perfect score on a test is 100%. Percents are the same as fractions out of one hundred.
We repeated the same procedure for 25 squares. This time we had to simplify. Then, I switched things up on my students. I had them color in 1/2 of the squares. Before we could move on, we had to identify what that would be as a fraction out of 100. Then, we were able to figure out the decimal and percent rather easily. This provided a great opportunity to explain why it is 0.5, not 0.05. Just look at the squares!
I let one of the students come up with the last one. He chose to have us color in 72 squares. This made for a little more complex simplifying, but the kids were up for the challenge.
We continued to practice converting with several problems. Then, I introduced the number line.
I selected three numbers. (one fraction, one percent, and one decimal) As a group, we thought through all the conversions and used our basic number sense to figure out where to place the numbers on the number line. For this one, we began with 25%. We knew this was halfway between 0 and 1/2. Then, we placed 0.63. We knew it was more than 1/2, but less than 3/4. Finally we had to figure out 1/5. We divided 1 by 5 to determine that it would be 0.20 as a decimal. (which is less than 25%)
This activity required students to use a whole lot of math, but they loved it! There is something way more fun about a giant laminated number line with hot pink paper than number lines on a worksheet.
We continued to work on converting between fractions, decimals, and percents. I have to admit that I am very impressed with how the students' understandings are developing. If you would like a copy of the numbers I used for the number line activity, click here.
Also, check out this great giveaway at The Teacher's Chair! Lots of amazing bloggers are offering some fantastic prizes that you will not want to miss! I might have something in there too... ;)
Is everyone else as glad as I am that it is March?