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Hands-On Equations®

Powerful Whole Brain Learning

Developing Fractions Sense® 3 & 4

This full-day workshop provides strategies for teaching the grades 3 and 4 Common Core fractions standards

In this full-day workshop, teachers will gain a deep conceptual understanding of the 3rd and 4th-grade fraction standards. We first present all concepts using the fraction blocks, rectangular grids or the number line and only then present arithmetic procedures. This solid understanding serves as the foundation for successful classroom instruction.

“This workshop is absolutely essential for any elementary teacher who teaches 3rd – 6th grade math. It provides foundational concepts to truly understand fractions.” -Workshop Participant 

Sample Problems:

  • On a number line, locate the numbers 3/4, 7/4, 3/1 and 5/5.
  • Use the fraction blocks to find the missing number: 5/2 = ?/6.
  • Use a benchmark fraction to determine which is greater: 2/5 or 4/7.
  • Use a 3 by 4 rectangular grid to determine which is greater: 3/4 or 2/3.
  • Decompose 1 2/3 into a sum of fractions in two different ways.
  • If 2/3 of a cup of flour is needed to bake one cake, how much flour is needed to bake 4 cakes?
  • A rectangle is 6 feet long and has a perimeter of 20 1/3 feet. What is its length?     

Participants at this workshop will learn:

  • The importance of concretely and pictorially introducing all concepts related to fractions
  • Why working with unit fractions is the key to all work with fractions
  • How working with fraction blocks (e.g., pattern blocks) dramatically simplifies the teaching of fractions
  • The importance of specifying what is the whole in any given fractions problem
  • How the concepts of “partitioning” and “copies” helps in understanding fractions
  • Strategies for locating line segments and points on a number line
  • An easy way to help students avoid adding the denominators when adding fractions
  • Fluently adding and subtracting fractions with the same denominator
  • A clear way to explain, illustrate and generate equivalent fractions symbolically
  • How to use benchmark fractions to compare fractions
  • A simple way to understand multiplication of a fraction by a whole number 

Using fraction blocks and other visual models, students develop a deep conceptual understanding of fractions.

Class sets of materials are available for implementing the grades 3 and 4 fractions standards. Each class set includes a copy of the Developing Fractions Sense Student Workbook A (grade 3) or B (grade 4), and a set of fraction blocks for each student, as well as the Instructional Guide and Answer Key for the teacher.  

Developing Fractions Sense A Class Set (3rd Grade)


Developing Fractions Sense B Class Set (4th Grade)

To bring this full-day workshop to your district:

Please send an email to, complete a quick form or call 800-993-6284. Please specify three alternative dates that will work for you.

Note: The Developing Fractions Sense workshop for grade 4 is also available as a full-day workshop.

Developing Fractions Sense(R) is a registered trademark of Borenson and Associates, Inc.