# Ways to teach fractions

I'm tutoring elementary-level kids on equivalent fractions and am not doing a very good job of explaining it. I've tried using the example of a pizza or a pie and have shown them how they can come up with infinitely many equivalent fractions by picking a number and multiplying the top and bottom.

What are some other ways that I could explain equivalent fractions to kids so that they understand them better?

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can you explain what failed with the pizza example? – picakhu Nov 23 '11 at 5:59
equivalent fractions – pedja Nov 23 '11 at 6:01
You have to be careful here. $\frac{4}{6}=\frac{10}{15}$ but 10 is not an integral multiple of 4. – Joel Reyes Noche Nov 23 '11 at 8:34
You might also be interested in area51.stackexchange.com/proposals/35226/… – Joel Reyes Noche Nov 23 '11 at 8:35

## 1 Answer

I think I would try to use examples with units the students understand, or a tangible example.

For instance, set up four piles:

1. Two one-dollar bills.
2. 8 quarters.
3. 20 dimes.
4. 200 pennies.

Ask 4 students to take 1 dollar from each pile, for example. So they each took $\frac{1}{2}$ of each pile and yet the 4 students have 1, 4, 10, and 100 objects, respectively, in their hands.

I also recommend this article, though it's not on equivalent fractions, per se.

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