Teaching Fractions Using Legos

Have you ever noticed that certain things are just easier to learn when you can see, touch, and manipulate them? Fractions seems to be one of those things. Using objects like pizza, pie, chocolate, and Legos can be a great way to visualize and work with fractions. Teaching fractions using Legos can be a tad neater (and less hunger inducing) than some of the other options I just listed!

Teaching Fractions Using Legos from Starts At Eight. Teaching Fractions Using Legos is a great way to offer hands-on experience with manipulating fractions. So grab your Lego bricks and get start the math fun!

Legos are fairly commonplace in most homes with children, therefore they are a familiar and easily accessible resource to use for teaching fractions. With that in mind I was thrilled to find a series of books that uses Legos to teach math concepts – Brick Math Series by Dr. Shirley Disseler includes books on fractions, multiplication and division using Legos.

Teaching Fractions Using Legos

Teaching Fractions Using Lego Bricks is the book we decided to start with. While we are doing well with division and multiplication, I think that fractions is one place where a hands-on, visual approach is in order with my 5th grader. {I received a free copy of Teaching Fractions Using Lego Bricks in exchange for writing this review.  All views are my own and I was not required to write a positive review. Please see my full Disclosure Policy for more details.}

The book starts with the most basic concepts and focuses on a specific topic in each chapter. Most students learn these concepts between grades 2 – 6.

Teaching Fractions Using Lego Bricks

The hands-on activities using LEGO Bricks help students learn how to:

  • recognize fractions
  • use the vocabulary of fractions
  • define a whole and represent parts of different sized wholes
  • add and subtract with like and unlike denominators
  • represent and understand mixed numbers and find equivalent fractions



Using Teaching Fractions with Lego Bricks

Getting Set Up

The first thing we did was look through the book to find the maximum amount of blocks for each type that we would need. Then we sifted through our Legos to create a collection of bricks to use for our math fractions adventure!

Beyond that I printed a handful of copies of the Base Plate Paper that is included at the end of the book. (If you purchase the Learning Fractions Using Lego Bricks Student Edition you don’t have to do this.)

Using the Book

This teacher manual clearly lays out each step one at a time with clear photos to demonstrate how it should look. This makes it easy for you to sit and interact with your child. As you can see we sat on the floor together working out each step on our base plate, and then drawing it on our Base Plate Paper.

 

Tips for Using This Method

1. Purchase the Student Edition too!

Even though you can use this book as a stand alone and walk your child through the activities using other paper and copying the giving base sheets from the book, I highly recommend purchasing the student companion – Learning Fractions Using Lego Bricks. It offers your student a place to record all of their work in a neat and orderly fashion, and allows them to be more independent with the book.

2. Buy a Large Base Plate

You start out using a small one and then move up to a slightly bigger one. I suggest not only having the little one, but purchasing a giant one too. This made it much easier for us to expand beyond the lesson with more examples all on the same working space.

3. Use Colored Pencils

Using colored pencils that match the blocks made it so much easier when drawing our fraction solutions. It is also super helpful when looking back on their notes if they don’t have to guess what was what because it was all done in the same color.

4. Start At The Beginning

Even though my daughter is familiar with the basics of fractions we chose to start at the beginning of the book to get used to the style in which it teaches. If you haven’t worked much with Legos it is good to start there so you can get familiar with using them for these math activities.

If you like this book you can also purchase the Teaching and Learning books for Multiplication and Division.

  1. Teaching Division Using Lego Bricks
  2. Learning Division Using Lego Bricks
  3. Teaching Multiplication Using Lego Bricks
  4. Learning Multiplication Using Lego Bricks

Other Math or Lego Articles of Interest

Learning with Legos from Starts At EightMemorizing Math Facts from Starts At Eight. A list of building block math facts to memorize along with resources to help kids memorize them.Playing Card Math for Middle School - Games to Make Math Fun! from Starts At EightResources for Learning Multiplication Tables from Starts At Eight