Does anyone have a fun art project to teach fractions. Also how can I make teaching social studies from a textbook interesting? Do you cover a whole chapter in one week? I'm having trouble keeping up. Thank you.

Ed Emberly has a book called picture pie. It's basically pictures made from fractions cut out of circles. You can make some round circles from construction paper and have the kids make art with them.... I have not done this with 5th grade, but my 3rd graders liked it!

I don't have any fun fraction projects. Sorry.... BUT, in response to your social studies question. I decided to take it easy. I will not rush through social studies. We don't have a pacing schedule, so it's nice. I do a chapter a month, yep, a month. We do social studies 2 times a week (would love to do everyday...) for 45 minutes. We do a lesson a week. So, on Thrusday we will read the lesson and talk about it. Then on Friday, we will do some sort of activity that goes along with the lesson. Sometimes it's just questions, or othertimes it will be an art acitivity. I do the same for science. We do science Monday and Tuesday, so Monday we read the lesson and on Tuesday we do an acitivity page.

It's definitely not art, but once we get to fractions in a couple weeks I'll be making a foldable for them to use... google Dinah Zike, you may find a picture online. Last year I taught social studies strictly with the textbook for the first month and a half and it was a disaster. Way too dense, the kids couldn't get much from it independently and the activities provided weren't that great. This year I'm using a lot of outside resources (like workbooks & guides from the teacher store) and lots of library books. We refer to the textbook occasionally, mostly for supplemental information and vocabulary.

I don't know about art projects, I haven't even thought about something for it, but for social studies.... I don't use the books at all. I use all outside resources and write a lot of my lessons myself. My social studies books are terrible so I don't use them at all. We're starting the regions of the US right now and we'll do a region a month for the next 5 or so months. The kids are liking it so far.

Perhaps you can make an art activity while using pattern blocks. I like to use pattern blocks to show them that fractions aren't always in the shape of a bar or a circle. Explain to your students that the yellow hexagon is 1 hole, the red trapezoid is 1/2, etc. Then give them a mixed number and tell them to create a picture. For example, if their number is 3 2/6, they would have to make a picture using any of the patten blocks that when added make the mixed number 3 2/6. Then they can draw their picture. If you have advanced students, you can tell them that the yellow hexagon is 1/2 and then they have to figure out that the red trapezoid is 1/4. For children who might face challenges, let them create the picture first and then have them find the value of their picture.

fun with fractions?? I find that most fifth graders have experienced the basics of fractions. You can preassess by using colored strips of construction paper to fold them into fourths, thirds, etc that color correlate with your overhead fraction bars. This helps them understand the equivalency. I use money alot to help them understand that if I have 3 dollars and 50 cents, and need to take away seventy five cents, that I have to exchange a whole dollar for coins. This helps them easily see to rename. For mult and division, we fold papers and shade to make the connections. 1/4 x 1/3 Shade 1/4 on one side and then shade 1/3.on the other. I also use money again. Multiplication is 2 rows of 3 for 2 x 3. What about 2 rows of 1/4? 2 rows of 25 cents is.... Remember that division is grouping....we use beans to group. Give them a pan of beans and instruct them to measure out 2 cups. We want to divide the beans into groups of 1/4 cups. How many groups do we have? We finally have them take a family recipe and reduce and enlarge the amounts as a family project to bring home the application to real life. At the end of the unit, we create a flow chart to all operations of fractions...it is a challenge, but shows them just how many processes are involved! Hope this helps you a bit.

What does the flow chart look like? Thanks - I haven't taught math at this level before. I know I will need to be careful because I have some very confused students in class who won't be able to transfer from money to percentages to fractions easily. I want to do a lot of reveiw to help them get on tract.

Just jumping on here...for an art activity have them make tesselation pictures and color the shapes in a given pattern (red, purple, yellow). Then have them figure what fraction of the picture is red. It isn't always 1/3. As for soc. st....I don't force myself to cover a chapter per week or per month. Some chapters take more time to cover adequately than others. I also elect to skip over certain materials that don't seem to fit or can be presented later. This year we skipped the book chapter on Native Americans, but we will do a project about the different tribes during the second semester. My end goal is to get through the Civil War by the end of the year, maybe Reconstruction if we are really going along well.