By Michael Hartley
Here's a fraction activity for kids who are just starting on learning fractions. It's math fraction dominoes! I've made up a printable fraction domino set for you to download. Print them (in color or black and white), cut them out, and stick them onto thick card, balsa wood or stiff foam sponge to make a set of dominoes.
Each of the 49 dominoes in the set looks something like this :
As you can see, one side shows a fraction, written in numerals. The other side shows a fraction circle. The fractions in the set are 1/2, 1/3, 2/3, 1/4, 3/4, 1/6 and 5/6. Just about any game you can play with a normal set of dominoes, you can play with this set. Since there are 49 dominoes in this set instead of 28, you can have larger groups of kids involved in the fraction activity. On the other hand, smaller groups will work just as well as they do for ordinary dominoes.
For reference, here's the rules of dominoes, as I learned them as a child. Feel free to play by your rules!
- At the start of the game, the dominoes are placed face down, and shuffled around. Each player selects 7 dominoes at random (or, if there are many players, just 5).
- The player with the highest 'double' plays it as the first move of the game (in fractions dominoes, the 'highest' fraction could just be the fraction closest to one, or could be the fraction with the highest denominator).
- On a player's turn, the need to match one end of one of their dominoes to a 'free end' of a domino that has already been played. A 'free end' means one that has not been matched before. (In fractions dominoes, you could allow numeral and circle fractions to match either numeral or circle fractions, or you could say that the numeral fraction can only be matched to a circle fraction, and vice versa.)
- 'Doubles' are special (that is, dominoes with both ends matching). When a player plays a double, it is placed so its middle lies against the matching end. Then, other dominoes can be placed against the middle of the other side, or against either end.
- If a player can't go, he or she must draw another domino from the pile of face-down dominoes.
- The winner is the first player to finish all of his or her dominoes.
Well, that's all. I hope it helps, and that your kids really enjoy fractions dominoes!
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