Do your students groan when you say you’re going to be working to learn division strategies? With better understanding and easy to use methods, that won’t be the case. If you teach Common Core division, you probably know about the partial quotients method, but what about the box method, area model, and grid model. How about rectangle sections division or the expanded notation division method? There are lots of choices to learn division. What works for one student may not work for another, which is why teaching multiple methods is so important!
Before you begin teaching division, ensure that students have a solid understanding of multiplication, the meaning of “making equal groups of,” “divvying up,” and “sharing fairly.” This is a crucial foundation to teaching division with larger numbers.
Make sure students have a solid understanding of how multiplication and division are related through fact families, for example, 4 x 6 = 24, 6 x 4 = 24, 24/4= 6, 24/6 =4. This is will help speed up the division process. Use fact family flash cards to help reinforce these skills.
*Hint: Get spinner flash cards here
*Hint: Need help teaching Multiplication, check out this Blog post
If you really want to get the idea of fact families and divisibility across, money (fake Monopoly money or your classroom economy), is a great real life way to do so! Choose 4 volunteers to demonstrate. Take a $20 bill and four-$1s and give it to one student then ask the student to divide the money among all 4 of the students fairly. Let the student figure out (and help if needed) that s/he needs to trade the cash for smaller bills first in order to divide the money equally. As the student distributes a dollar bill one at a time to each of the 4 students, record using tally marks. When you’re finished, ask each student how much they got and reinforce 4 students with $6 each equals $24. 4×6 = 24 AND 24/4 = 6
ALWAYS USE REAL LIFE PROBLEMS
Teach division using the context of real-life problems that are meaningful for students. Some great ways to start are sharing money, sharing candy, or sharing a whole pizza. Begin with problems students can easily do with whole answers (ie: 8 slices of pizza between 4 students, $20 between 5 students, 30 pieces of candy between 3 students) and model the math on the board. Check and prove the answer using multiplication each time to reinforce the relationship of division with multiplication.
Examples of Progression of division and divisibility:
The six students on the recycling team shared 30 pieces of pizza. How many pieces did each student get? (30/6 = 5 pieces each).
Then move to a problem that has a remainder such as:
The six students on the recycling team were going to share some pizza. Then three more students arrived who would also be sharing the 30 pieces of pizza. How many pieces did each student get? (30/9=3 pieces each with 3 pieces left over or 3 r3). Help students take the remaining 3 pieces and divvy them up into thirds, so each student would also get 1/3 of a piece.
INTRODUCE A PROBLEM SO YOU CAN TEACH THE PARTIAL QUOTIENTS DIVISION METHOD
Next, move on to more challenging problem that can’t be solved easily. This problem is perfect to allow you to teach the partial quotients method. The partial quotients method makes a problem easier to do, since the divisor gets smaller each time and the numbers get more manageable.
There are 28 fifth graders who will share 890 pieces of Halloween candy. How many pieces of candy will each student get?
Remember when teaching division that there are 10 ways! What works for one student may not work for the next, and that’s okay. There are so many different methods you can use to teach division. For some learners, the standard algorithm long division works. For others, the area model makes more sense while other students might like the rectangle sections method. *Hint: Check out this Division Strategies PowerPoint, posters, and folded booklet to help teachers, students and parents find the method that works for each child.
10 Division Strategies at a glace. Each strategy is further expanded upon within the division strategies set that you can find in my TpT store.
NEW! Now also in DIGITAL format, for distance learning!