Fraction Lesson : Candy Bars and M&Ms

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Activities & Lesson Ideas
Candy Bar Fraction Lesson
Webmaster note:  Thanks Colleen!  Kids ALWAYS love learning when there's a food lesson!
Fractions with Candy Bars and M&Ms!  Yum!
Submitted by Colleen from Schaumburg, Illinois

Materials
  • M & Ms of different colors
  • Hershey Candy Bars
  • Magnetic fraction bars

Activity

I start by passing out a paper candy bar to everyone that has 12 parts.

We talk about how a candy bar is the whole and they they cut it in half so they see that 6 pieces=1 half.  I model with a real candy bar.

We talk about them splitting this with a friend so they would have EQUAL PARTS. Then I tell them 2 other friends come over so they have to split each half into equal parts again. As we do each split, I draw a picture of the fraction and label it.

Once we have divided the candy bar into twelve pieces and I have shown them how we went from 1/2 to 1/12, I use magnetic fraction bars to show them briefly how 1/12 is much smaller than 1/2.

Once they get this down and have enjoyed a real candy bar, I then take small bags of M & Ms and pass them out to pairs of kids. We divide our candy into groups by color and then figure out which fraction of the different colors everyone has. For example, if they have 24 total candies and 8 of them are red, I show them that 8/24 are red. Those that are ready always seem to tell me that this is 1/3. (I divide candy in advance so there is always an even number in bags, but not always the same number so some groups may get 24, others 30, others 36, etc.).

When we have figured out the fraction of each color (I have them draw it out on paper with crayons and label the pictures), I let them eat their fractions. My kids always love this since it involves food and they always get fractions too!
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