### Math Journal Sundays - Fractions

I've got two great math journal entries to share with you today, both about fractions.  With the end of the year in sight, our math journal entries will be coming to end soon, too.  These math journals have been my favourite addition to my classroom this year - hands down.  I'm so excited to be able to provide my students with a tool they can keep using for years to come.  We've got a highschool co-op student at our school right now, who just happens to be a graduate of our elementary school.  One day at lunch she told me how much she appreciated the math notecard system we used when she was in my class - she said she was able to use it as a reference for years - even into her highschool math classes.  I told her she had to stop by my class and see our new math journals - same kind of valuable reference tool, but so much more interactive.

Anyhow ... my first entry to share with you today is our fraction flipbook - focusing on converting fractions to decimals and percents.  I got my inspiration for this from this pin on pinterest - a fabulous idea from Buzzing with Mrs. B.  We cut 10 pieces of paper at various lengths to make this flipbook and stapled the pages together at the top.  I made a quick handout for each student that had 9 boxes for the labels, 9 circles and 9 rectangles for drawing the fractions, and 9 tables that had fraction, decimal, and percent sections.  Students cut out all the pieces and glued them into each section.  We did two sections together, and then the students were responsible for finishing the book independently so I could assess for understanding.

We also completed a left-side of the page thinking for this entry, where students discuss what they already know, what they learned, proof, and a reflection.  Do you see the yellow dot in the top left corner?  This is our traffic light comprehension - students give a green dot if they found the concept easy, yellow for some difficulty, and red for a lot of difficulty.  We use our traffic light comprehension dots on our group work during our three-part lessons in math, but I hadn't thought of adding them to our math journals until now.  This gives me a quick way to see what students may need a little extra help with this lesson or concept.  Can't believe I didn't think of adding it to my journals until now - LOVE how the journals keep evolving this year!

Our second journal entry focused on Equivalent Fractions.  I've been using pizza fractions for years (and judging from the amount of pins on pinterest, so has everyone else).  ;)        I gave each student a circle and had them draw a smaller circle around the edge to make a crust for the pizza.  We then folded our circle into sixteenths.  I gave students the learning goal and instructions to make the pizza:  1/4 cheese, 1/4 pepperoni, 1/8 mushrooms, 1/8 sausage, 3/16 green olives (or alligator nostrils as my four-year old calls them), and 1/16 anchovies (had to get something in there to "gross out" my plethora of boys in the class).  We discussed that 2/8 equaled 1/4, and 2/4 equaled 1/2, and so on ...

We then cut along the fraction lines and peeled back the sections so we could practice our converting to decimals and percents (still working on that concept from last week).

We also completed a left side of the page thinking for this entry.  I completely forgot to remind the students to add a traffic light comprehension dot to their page this time ... I think I'll get them to do that before I invite a student to share his or her journal entry as our review on Monday.

We also had some fun using my Fraction Cootie Catchers - such a fun way for partner review.  At this time of year, (and with the sun shining outside) I've got to pull out all the stops to keep my students engaged.  And I loved "eavesdropping" on the various conversations around the room.  When a partner got the answer wrong, the other partner had to "teach and explain" how to find the correct answer.  You can click on the picture to see this product at my TPT store.

Hope you are all having a fantastic weekend - it's hot and sunny here today, so we'll be making some homemade popsicles to enjoy while wading in the kiddie pool this afternoon.

Happy Sunday!!!

1. You have me so excited to teach math! I have a few questions about the Left Side Thinking Page. 1) Do students complete it after you do the right side or do they fill in the goal and write what they already know first and then finish the rest after the lesson? 2) Speaking of the goal on the left side- do they have to put it in their own words or do you help with that? 3) The reflection- how much guidance do you give students here? They seem to come up with cool things but I worry my students would be stumped on this.
Thanks so much for sharing this amazing resource!

2. Hi Jen! The students do the goal in their own words (I don't help with that at this point, but I probably would at the beginning of the year) and what they already know before we finish the right side, and finish the rest after the lesson. They are also responsible for finishing the reflection on their own (I do have an anchor chart up that gives them direction and ideas for the reflection). I got all my ideas for the left-side thinking from a fabulous resource from A Teacher's Treasure - The Interactive Student Notebook. Here is the link so you can check it out: http://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Interactive-Student-Notebook

3. Wonderful! I love the idea of a math journal. In fact, I plan on making that a part of my math class this upcoming school year. This past year I revamped by adding more practice through math games and groups. So, next step: math journals. Thanks for sharing! :)

1. Thanks, Tonya! It's the best thing that has happened to my math class - ever!

4. Love this flipbook for learning fractions! I want to add math journals to my classroom next year and be consistent with it. :)

Lisa
Learning Is Something to Treasure

1. Thanks, Lisa. This is the first year I've actually been consistent with my math journals (teaching for 11 years). Because the kids are actually excited about them this year, it's been easy.

5. I love your math journal Sundays. I am looking at using my math journals more effectively next year. Would you consider creating a booklet with all of your best math journal ideas? I would love to see one concise plan for the next year!

1. Thanks!!! Actually, creating a math journal resource at the top of my to-do list this summer. I'm already so excited about it - ideas have been swimming through my head!

6. I love this entry Jen!!!!! Love the folding pizza and love it even more inside the notebook!

1. Thanks, Mor! I have to admit, it did make me a little hungry while making it - I had the hubby bring home pizza for supper that night. ;) YAY for interactive journals, my fellow journal queen!

7. Can't wait to implement this next year with the CC!!

8. I am SO excited about using interactive journals with my kiddos next year!

Laura

9. This is great! Do you use a composition book or a spiral notebook? College ruled or wide ruled? How many pages do you suggest that book have?

1. Thanks! I'm just using the softcover notebooks this year (I think they have 80 pages), but I'd like to get the harder cover composition books next year. They are college ruled.

10. This is a great idea!!!! Love it and will be incorporating these ideas in the fall!!! Thanks for sharing...you are a very creative teacher!

1. Hey Runde....I am new to the interactive notebook concept...and my team members and I are so totally sold on this concept! Is there any way that you could send me information on getting the book started? Your articles are very explicit...and I will comb back through them...but any template pages, websites, or specific sources you could recommend would be great!!! Thanks for your inspirational posts on this!!

11. I've just recently started following your blog and I just wanted to thank you for providing such awesome resources! I love both journals that you shared, but I love all the neat ideas you incorporated into the equivalent fractions! Just a quick question, how often do you use the math journals in your class--is it on a weekly basis or for each new learning goal? Thanks!

1. Thank-you so much! We have been completing one to two a week this year - they do take some time to complete with both sides of the page.

12. hello Runde . . . . it's very inspiring, i love your math journal. can't wait to share with my students in Jakarta...thanks a lot. GBU

13. Can't wait to try this! Use your journal ideas for Primes, Composites, and Factors. Trying to bring in the self-assessment traffic light or will in the new year. Thanks so much for inspiring me to do "more" and tpt stuff is awesome! My 5th graders in California thank you!
Jen