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Dividing Whole Numbers by Fractions Song

A journey into medieval times is the perfect setting to learn about dividing whole numbers by fractions. Ivan is everyone's favorite stone mason as he builds walls and seats from blocks of rocks for us to contemplate what it means to divide by a fraction. Meanwhile in the Kingdom there is a dragon afoot that threatens the peaceful learning process; yet, there is no reason to fear! A rapper knight has come to save the day, protect our wonderful stone mason teacher, and pledge his love to the princess of the land.

Song Lyrics:

I took my blocks and built two walls.
In each wall one block was one fourth of them all.
Two divided by one fourth equals eight;
eight blocks to build the wall at my castle gate.

To divide a whole number by a fraction we start
by dividing the whole number into fractional parts.
Then count the number of fractional parts present;
and that will be the quotient.

Then I took my blocks and built three seats.
One block was one fifth of each.
Three divided by one fifth equals fifteen;
that’s how many blocks it took to build my seats.

When there’s a fraction we want to divide by,
we can flip the fraction and multiply.
Think of three divided by one fifth:
we’ll get the same answer if we multiply and flip.
So these expressions are equal, and we call
five over one, one-fifths reciprocal.

Learn More

This song targets TEKS and Common Core learning standards from both 4th Grade and 5th Grade. Look into the relevant standards here, or dig deeper into dividing fractions here. Or click here to get a conceptual/visual understanding of why one can Keep, Change, and Flip when dividing fractions as a means of obtaining the right answer.

If you are interested in getting ideas on how to plan a robust standards-aligned telling time lesson, we recommend checking out Instructure's recommendations for common core standards 5.NF.B.7. These pages help break down standard language, lay out the grade-appropriate level of rigor for each concept, and offer a variety of suggestions for activities (lesson seeds) that help students achieve their learning targets.

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