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Working with Fractions in a Centers-Based Environment

written by: Tricia Wegman • edited by: Carly Stockwell • updated: 11/11/2013

Have you ever thought about using centers to teach math concepts in your inclusion classroom? This lesson plans spells out some centers that will engage learners of all levels.

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    Math Activities for the Inclusive Classroom Teaching math concepts is a challenge in inclusion classrooms because they are very definite and don’t leave room for much error. Teachers can, however, enrich student learning by using a variety of activities to aide in how students receive and reproduce new information. Centers are useful to get students working in different activities that all reinforce learning.

    Group 1: General Education students

    Group 2: Students with access needs (i.e. students who receive the same curricular content, but receive accommodations in how information is presented or skills are evaluated due to a learning difficulty.)

    Group 3: Students with curricular content adjustments.

    Lesson 1 Objectives:

    • Students will show understanding of the terms 1 whole, ½, 1/3 and ¼ while working with fractions.
    • Students will work with fractions in a centers based environment.


    • Whiteboards & Markers
    • Pita bread, tomato sauce, & cheese
    • Computers
    • Assessments (as listed below)
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    Lesson Procedure:

    Group Instruction: Review the fraction concepts of 1 whole, ½, 1/3 and ¼ on the board. Using pictures and examples, give a summary of how they work.

    Centers: This lesson is comprised of three centers. Students should be divided into groups based on abilities and needs so that teachers can explain to the groups at their level. Students will be working in centers simultaneously

    • Center #1: Computers. Students at this center will work with partners to practice identifying ½, 1/3, and ¼ using the following games:
    • Center #2 (with a teacher): Whiteboards. Giving each student a small whiteboard and markers, work through each fraction by having students draw the shapes and color accordingly as the teacher explains.
    • Center #3 (with a teacher): At this center, students will be making pita pizzas. Reinforce the fraction learning by giving each child a pita (or any round shaped bread). With each separate pita, have students cut with a plastic knife to demonstrate halves, thirds, or fourths being created from one whole. When illustrations are finished, allow students to put sauce and cheese on their pita.


    • Group 1 Format: Students will be asked to look at picture depicting fractions and will be asked to write the correct fraction. They will also be asked to draw a picture that represents a written fraction.
    • Group 2 Format: Depending on ability, this test will be in multiple choice format to help students with any organization or writing difficulties. They will be assessed on the same content as mentioned in the assessment for group 1.
    • Group 3 Format: With the inclusion aide, have students demonstrate competence with fractions by using plastic math manipulatives.

    Allowing students to work with fraction concepts on the computer, writing in different colors, and using their hands to make pizza will be a sure way to ensure comprehension and retention. Each activity can be adapted and differentiated as needed according the student levels.

Differentiated Instruction for an Inclusive Classroom

Many teachers now experience classrooms with students of all abilities. This series includes activities for language arts, social studies, science and math.
  1. Differentiated Instruction for an Inclusive Classroom: Language Arts
  2. Working with Fractions in a Centers-Based Environment
  3. Differentiated Instruction for an Inclusive Classroom: Social Studies
  4. Tracking the Growth of a Plant: Science Activity for Inclusive Classrooms
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