Fractions; As Related to the Whole

Some years ago, I was a resource specialist teacher who taught Algebra.  A resource specialist is responsible for being able to teach general education concepts to remedial learners who are in general education classes.  Many of my students had struggled with math for years and were on their second or third attempt at passing their math class.  The ability to recalculate fractions, decimals and percentages were a large portion of Algebra and a major focus of state testing at the time.  I was charged with figuring out the mental roadblocks that hindered them from grasping mathematical concepts because once that door was unlocked, the math became manageable for them. I dare not say, it became easy but it became much easier to complete them when doing geometry proofs, word problems, etc.  One of the concepts that “unlocked” mysteries for students was to get them to understand what a fraction is, in relation to the whole.  Fractions make more sense when you can establish their relationship to the things around them that they are a part of.  For example, if I explain the fact that one sixth can be explained as one soda can taken from a 6-pack. Or, it can be one slice of a pizza that has been cut into 6 pieces. You see? The concept of what a fraction represents is now much more clear.  It’s about relationships!  

an-equivalent-fraction

Single people around the globe and particular within the US, need to come to the understanding that their singleness is not just about them.  In fact, they are not actually singles but, rather they are individual parts that make up the whole. How much relief comes to the community as well as the mental state of individuals to know that they are not floating around separate from everyone else. Think about it.  Single people, you are not alone.  You were never alone.  You are not meant to be alone.  You were born into a family, a whole group of which you are an integral part.  What part do you play in your family? Now some of us have wacked out families and we really don’t too much want to be involved with their crazy behinds. That’s okay too.  I may even say that this may be a healthy choice for you.  Nevertheless, you are still part of a whole.  Let me give you some ideas about what your whole can be.  Your whole can be a group of friends that you have had since high school or college, your coworkers, a religious group that you belong to, your neighborhood, etcetera.  You are a significant member of each of the circles to which you belong.
How are you a significant part you may be wondering?  Well, just like the fraction.  When your ⅙ is not there, something is missing.  The community is not reaching it’s full potential.  I’ve noticed in my coming of age, some friends getting married, breaking relational connections, having children and then getting divorced.  Not all of them got divorced but approximately half of them have.  What if you, single person, was the missing piece to your friend’s community?  What if you had been available to watch the kids so that mom and dad could have a date night or attend a marriage conference?  The community, or your whole, needs a variety of people, married, single, young and old, to make it work properly.  I propose that single people are a vital part to the thriving of their various communities.  I have had the great pleasure of being able to walk with two friends of mine, as they got their businesses up and running.  One is married with children and the other was single at the time but, because of my status, I was able to be that piece that helped to propel them forward by teaching a workshop, attending a business conference with them or just having the time to give a word of encouragement. Single person you are significant to your family, your single friends, your married friends, your coworkers, your neighborhoods, your work associations and volunteer organizations.  The only question you have to answer for yourself is, “What part do I play in the whole?” and then to start doing it. Of course, relationships are always a two-way street.  If the other party rejects your willingness to be a part of their “whole” just keep searching because several other people groups and organizations are in need of the missing piece that you offer.

 

It maybe helpful to do an equivalent fraction activity to help grasp the concept above.  If not, it’s always a good activity for the kids to practice their math.

Math worksheets for kids. easy fractions

Math online practice and game sites:

www.aaamath.com (elementary & middle grades)

www.purplemath.com (high school & adults)

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