Third graders are learning math with dance, and finding a formula for fractions through movement.
In Jacob’s Pillow, students and teachers at Conte Community School explored fractions with artist-educator Kimberli Boyd by learning dance steps.
Because fractions are often challenging concepts for young students, math coach Marianne Hoebel is working on new ways to teach and learn fractions. The new strategies are a part of implementing Common Core standards.
“Until they start to see the pieces come together, it’s not a whole number to them,” Hoebel said.
Teachers made new plans, and created choreography and concepts so students could learn to put parts together with the whole. In addition, the exercise promoted teamwork.
“It’s fun with the movement,” said third-grader Taliyah Ellis Scott.
Movements in the dances involved leaps, lunges, and cartwheels. The dances had titles like “Dividing Body Parts,” “Jumping Fracs,” “Dance of the Numerators & Denominators,” “Number Line Dance” and “Whole Group Dances.”
Students learned about four quarter turns equaling a full rotation, and counting to keep rhythm in counts of eight