If you cook, you use fractions. So why not use cooking to teach fractions? During the holidays my favorite recipes feed a small army, and when I’m cutting them in half, it always reminds me that cooking in an American kitchen uses plenty of fractions. That’s why I couldn’t resist adding a recipe to the […]

# Category: Research Studies

## Diversity, Comic Books & Math

Thanks to the Google search image that reminded me that this is not just another day off, I was inspired to read about diversity and comic books to celebrate Dr. King’s birthday. So with a warm cup of tea in hand, I stumbled across the work of Edel Reilly, who creatively asked her students to […]

## Multiplication: Lost in Translation?

A recent task I developed used visual models of multiplication involving a unit fraction. Can you match visual models with the expressions ⅓ x 12, ⅓ of 12 or 12 x ⅓? Who would have guessed that creating this task would send me on a hunt through time and continents for the first definitions of multiplication, multiplier, and multiplicand?

## Superpowers for Math Lessons: Writing

With mounting pressures of high stakes testing and pacing guides, often teachers find it difficult to add math writing tasks to daily lessons without leaving something valuable out. According to a study published this year, teachers don’t have to choose. Writing is a superpower when teaching fractions!

## Keep, Change, Flip: Are Algorithms our Frenemies?

In our zest to have children learn math deeply and creatively, professional math educators sometimes give the impression that algorithms are the enemy. In my opinion, nothing could be further from the truth.

## Why is Fraction Arithmetic So Hard AND Important!

I recently stumbled upon the work of Robert Siegler, a professor of cognitive psychology at Carnegie Mellon University who is working with several colleagues to determine why fraction arithmetic is so difficult. Of course, all the researchers he’s worked with should also be acknowledged (see below), but this is one of those times you read […]

## A Fraction-Algebra Sandwich

Peck and Matassa (2016) recently published a research paper that reinforced why fraction division and multiplication is such an important topic for children to master. We often hear that understanding fractions is a gateway to learning algebra, and these authors offered some pretty compelling reasons why that’s the case. Before we get to the study, […]

## Measurement, partitive, & more?!?!? Oh My!

There are many intriguing ways fraction division can be interpreted. The most common are measurement and partitive, but there are more. No wonder it’s so challenging to teach!

## Math & The Characters: Theo’s Mother

As I developed the story for Newton’s Nemesis, I wanted the underlying narrative to reinforce growth mindset, or more specifically, mathematical mindset. Jo Boaler, a professor of mathematics education at Stanford University, authored a wonderful book entitled Mathematical Mindset that encourages a culture shift in classrooms that rewards children for exploring mathematics. If children are […]

## Math Learning Disabilities (MLD) and Fractions

The other day, a math teacher sent me a lovely compliment about Newton’s Nemesis and asked if I knew much about how students with dyscalculia