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Fractions and/or Beast Academy 3D help please!


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My DS8 adores Beast Academy, and mostly has done really well with it. But we just started 3D and fractions are kicking his butt. I am not sure what to do and would love advice. Should I stop and work the rest of the year on reinforcing multiplication and division, since Beast Academy doesn't really drill and maybe memorizing those facts will help with fractions? Is there a really great fractions resource, either a book or app, that I can use to dig into fractions a little deeper? He doesn't get the concept of greater than/less than when the numerator is the same but the denominator is different. He doesn't completely get the concepts of simplifying and converting. I have tried drawing and explaining it in a thousand different ways. I am walking him through every step of every problem and it isn't sticking and they keep getting harder, obviously. This is the first thing that is important that has stumped him so I want to make sure I address it correctly...and honestly...I don't know if we should continue with Beast Academy 4. But I don't know what we would do instead. The next 2 chapters of 3D are estimation and area. I am assuming we need to cover those before going to 4A in August? He is so discouraged and I feel lost. Math is not my strong point and I am doing my best, but I feel like I am failing him. Help! 

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We use Beast as a supplement, and our main curriculum is Rightstart. We also use it behind. Mine had no trouble with the fractions section, because he already understood it thoroughly from his primary curriculum. So... Maybe do the fractions kit from Rightstart?

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I usually go to Khan Academy for basic concepts videos and practice when my kids have problems with our math curriculum. BA 3D does go hard and deep on fractions, which my DS2 just went through. 

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19 minutes ago, Kiara.I said:

We use Beast as a supplement, and our main curriculum is Rightstart. We also use it behind. Mine had no trouble with the fractions section, because he already understood it thoroughly from his primary curriculum. So... Maybe do the fractions kit from Rightstart?


I have heard of people using BA as a supplement. How does that work? I think any of my kids would lose their minds if we tried to juggle more than one math. Thanks for the idea of the fractions kit!

17 minutes ago, mama25angels said:

Could you slow down with fractions but have him go ahead and work on estimation and area so tha he's not so discouraged?  Also, maybe get the Key to Fractions books and work through those too.


Switching gears and moving forward but doing extra fractions work is a good idea. Thanks! I will look into the books you mentioned!

12 minutes ago, corail said:

I usually go to Khan Academy for basic concepts videos and practice when my kids have problems with our math curriculum. BA 3D does go hard and deep on fractions, which my DS2 just went through. 


I forgot about Khan Academy. Thanks! So hard and deep. I was reading to him from the answer key because I couldn't figure out how to do or explain some of them. I'm glad I wasn't the only one who thought it was a bit intense. 

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I would go ahead to the other two chapters of 3D, but continue working a little bit each day on the fraction topics. When it seems like he gets the topic, you can go back and do the fraction chapter.

You could get the MM dark blue book that introduces fractions for another source to teach fractions on the side: https://www.mathmammoth.com/introduction_fractions.php

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Okay, to begin with, I have Right Start fraction pieces, MUS fraction pieces, ETA Cuisenaire fraction circles, directions for using c-rods with fractions....

None of it clicked with my kid.  He could play with them, and understand what he was doing when he played, but it didn't transfer over.  Someone on here recommended the game Fraction Formula.  I put it in my Amazon cart and then accidentally bought it one day, figuring that at the very least he'd see a different way of doing things.  But it got the job done!  We started with the directions of the game (go to 1 without going over), and then slowly changed the rules to take out the 1/2s, creating a hand that would total 1, using two tubes simultaneously..and so on.  Every game it's just reinforced how to change fractions and make equivalent ones.  Each math lesson starts out with a game or two with that before we move on to the lesson of the day.

So now he's back doing fractions in Right Start, and everything for the next several lessons has been covered through that game.  The 3D pieces helped him sooooooo much!

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1 hour ago, Sarah0000 said:

We haven't got there yet but I'm planning on going though Right Brained Fractions with fraction circles and overlays before doing fractions in BA.


Thanks for the recommendation! I'll look into it!

53 minutes ago, silver said:

I would go ahead to the other two chapters of 3D, but continue working a little bit each day on the fraction topics. When it seems like he gets the topic, you can go back and do the fraction chapter.

You could get the MM dark blue book that introduces fractions for another source to teach fractions on the side: https://www.mathmammoth.com/introduction_fractions.php


I was actually looking at that today! We did Math Mammoth in 1st and 2nd grade and he wasn't a huge fan but it is so clear. I think I am going to buy the book and slowly work through that on top of moving forward with the end of BA. Thanks for the suggestions!

39 minutes ago, HomeAgain said:

Okay, to begin with, I have Right Start fraction pieces, MUS fraction pieces, ETA Cuisenaire fraction circles, directions for using c-rods with fractions....

None of it clicked with my kid.  He could play with them, and understand what he was doing when he played, but it didn't transfer over.  Someone on here recommended the game Fraction Formula.  I put it in my Amazon cart and then accidentally bought it one day, figuring that at the very least he'd see a different way of doing things.  But it got the job done!  We started with the directions of the game (go to 1 without going over), and then slowly changed the rules to take out the 1/2s, creating a hand that would total 1, using two tubes simultaneously..and so on.  Every game it's just reinforced how to change fractions and make equivalent ones.  Each math lesson starts out with a game or two with that before we move on to the lesson of the day.

So now he's back doing fractions in Right Start, and everything for the next several lessons has been covered through that game.  The 3D pieces helped him sooooooo much!


Oh man. I lol'd at you buying it by accident! Sounds like something I would do! I will look into it! Thanks!

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We hadn’t used Developing Fraction Sense from Borenson a couple years before we got to fractions in BA.  It’s just a little supplement, from the same makers as Hands on Equations, but really worked for my kid to get a very good idea of how fractions worked. If hands on manipulatives would help, it might be worth looking into.

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We just went and did the same topic in Math Mammoth when one of my kids was shaky on a topic in Beast Academy.  I think so far we have used MM for fractions and long division.  We paused BA at those points. Don't worry about being behind grade level with BA - you can be a year "behind" and still be on track to do pre-algebra in 7th grade and algebra in 8th.

 

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I'm wondering whether a bar of chocolate will help, too. 

  • Break chocolate bar into parts
  • Examine the fractions of chocolate

Sweet foods have been highly effective for us in learning fractions.  Our child doesn't want 1/100 of a sweet treat.  The Montessori-like conceptual fraction tiles from Learning Resources (bar, square, circle) are also useful.

Best of luck!

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We just finished the fractions chapter in 3D, and I agree with the posters above who advise mastering fractions before moving on. If it were estimation or measurement, I would say it’s ok to move on, but fractions truly deserve mastery. 

If your son is having trouble comparing fractions with like numerators, then I don’t think drilling facts will help. I would use fractions that use simple facts so that he doesn’t get bogged down in computations and can focus on the concepts. 

Here are some ideas that you may or may not have tried already! 

1. Use graduated cylinders to compare fractions. I like the ones linked below because they are the same shape and can be compared easily. The graduated lines are subtle and you can relabel them with your own intervals with a wet or dry erase marker.

Mark one with 1/10’s, another with 1/20’s another with 1/25’s etc and have him compare. For example, (5/10, 5/20, 5/25). This will also illustrate equivalent fractions, and therefore, simplified fractions. I remember a longtime hive member who once posted that the physical experience of pouring liquids sometimes clicks more than a drawing or even solid manipulatives, and I agree.

https://www.amazon.com/uxcell-Laboratory-Measuring-Graduated-Cylinder/dp/B01IPZ0ORU

2. Does he understand that every whole number is a fraction? If so, you can ask him to compare fractions like (8/4, 8/2) and (100/5, 100/2) to reinforce the concepts of numerator and denominator.

3. Instead of looking and comparing, have him place them on the number line to compare. I like the number line approach that BA takes, because it moves the student away from seeing pies and toward thinking of fractions as actual numbers. 

Once he understands how to compare fractions, I would think that simplifying and converting will fall into place. Good luck OP!

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On 5/11/2018 at 2:52 PM, Kiara.I said:

We use Beast as a supplement, and our main curriculum is Rightstart. We also use it behind. Mine had no trouble with the fractions section, because he already understood it thoroughly from his primary curriculum. So... Maybe do the fractions kit from Rightstart?

 

We also used BA as a supplement to RS, more as a review, and I completely agree with trying the RS fractions kit reinforced with card games. The bar fraction chart has been great at showing equivalents and simplification. RS's fractions webinars are good, too.

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9 hours ago, underthebridge said:

Here are some ideas that you may or may not have tried already! 

1. Use graduated cylinders to compare fractions. I like the ones linked below because they are the same shape and can be compared easily. The graduated lines are subtle and you can relabel them with your own intervals with a wet or dry erase marker.

Mark one with 1/10’s, another with 1/20’s another with 1/25’s etc and have him compare. For example, (5/10, 5/20, 5/25). This will also illustrate equivalent fractions, and therefore, simplified fractions. I remember a longtime hive member who once posted that the physical experience of pouring liquids sometimes clicks more than a drawing or even solid manipulatives, and I agree.

https://www.amazon.com/uxcell-Laboratory-Measuring-Graduated-Cylinder/dp/B01IPZ0ORU

 

Brilliant idea!  Hands-on activities like pouring fractions of liquids during bath time sounds great!  Love those cylinders!!!

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Key To Fractions - quick little booklets meant to be a supplement / remediation.  They explain everything perfectly, so that even my non-mathy kid has totally mastered fractions.  You can fly through those, then go back to Beast and it will make much more sense!

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