Activities to Teach Students to Convert Between Percents, Fractions, and Decimals

As an educator, teaching your students to convert between percents, fractions, and decimals is an essential aspect of their mathematical education. These concepts are interconnected and require an overall understanding of how they work together. However, learning this skill can often feel overwhelming and daunting for students. Therefore, incorporating fun and engaging activities can increase their engagement and understanding. Here are some activities to help teach students to convert between percents, fractions, and decimals.

1. Percent Tic Tac Toe:

Divide the class into groups of two and hand out a blank Tic Tac Toe board with spaces for fractions, decimals, and percents. Give each group a set of cards with different forms of each number type (e.g., 50%, 0.5, ½). Students should take turns selecting a card and placing it in their desired spot on the board. To win, students must convert the chosen form of a number to its equivalent forms to create a Tic Tac Toe pattern. This game is not only fun but also a great way to practice conversions as the students must determine which forms they need to win.

2. Basketball Conversions:

Assign each student a different form of a number and have them stand at particular points in the room. At your signal, each student should shout out the equivalent form of their assigned number, and then pass the basketball to another student, indicating to what form they should convert. For example, “0.25 decimals to fractions ¼.” The game builds upon the skills of the students while also helping them develop their reaction time.

3. Fractions and Decimals Memory Game:

Create a set of cards with shuffled equivalent fractions and decimals. Place all the cards face down on the table, and have students take turns flipping two cards over. If they match, the student gets to keep both cards. If they don’t match, the cards are placed back in the same position, and it is the next student’s turn. The game promotes memory and recollection while increasing students’ ability to convert between decimals and fractions confidently.

4. Percentage Pie Chart:

Provide each student a blank pie chart broken up into sections labeled with percents. Students can draw and color different objects to represent each percentage of the chart. In groups, have them share their charts and work together to convert their display into fractions and decimals. This activity encourages students to work together, utilizing problem-solving skills.

5. Interactive Quizzes:

Interactive quizzes on websites such as Quizizz, Kahoot, or Quizlet are an effective and interactive tool for students to consolidate their conversions. These quizzes include multiple-choice questions that test students’ conversion skills. It provides immediate feedback, tracks student’s progress, and improves their retention of the topic.

Overall, the goal of any activity involving the conversion of percents, fractions, and decimals is to make it as engaging and memorable for the students as possible. The more students are interested and stimulated, the greater their chances of retaining this valuable skill. With these activities, you can create an environment in which students can grasp the fundamental concepts underlying these conversions while having fun!   

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