Here’s a Fun Way to Teach Fractions Using Pool Noodles

Keep your math students’ interest afloat!

You can buy pool noodles for $1.00 a pop at any dollar store. And with summer on the horizon, they’re readily in stock. Pool noodles have multiple uses in the classroom, but they’re extra helpful when they’re keeping your math learners’ interest afloat. Check out this trick to make teaching fractions fun for students by using pool noodles.

What You Need

To make this hands-on activity, which can be used at a center or for independent word work, all you need is:

  • Pool noodles in at least two different colors
  • Cutting board
  • Knife
  • Permanent marker

What to Do

1. Measure 12 inches on a noodle. 

teaching fractions fun pool noodles step 1

2. Cut at the 12-inch mark.
teaching fractions fun pool noodles step 2

3. Write the number one on the piece.
teaching fractions fun pool noodles step 3

4. Cut the other color of pool noodle into two 6-inch pieces. Write .5 on each.
teaching fractions fun pool noodles step 4

5. Cut the first color of noodle into three 4-inch pieces for 1/3 (.3), then alternate colors for four 3-inch pieces for 1/4 (.25), six 2-inch pieces for 1/6 (.16), and eight 1.5-inch pieces for 1/8 (.125).

teaching fractions fun pool noodles step 5
teaching fractions fun pool noodles step 6

teaching fractions fun pool noodles step 7

teaching fractions fun pool noodles step 8

Voila! A tactile way to practice fractions or hit the pool.

Watch here to learn how to make teaching fractions fun with pool noodles:

 

Kimberley Moran

Posted by Kimberley Moran

Kimberley Moran is a Senior Digital Editor at WeAreTeachers and School Leaders Now. You can follow her on Twitter at @kimberleygmoran. Email her at kimberley@weareteachers.com. Her work has been featured on Good Magazine, The Week, International Public Radio, SheKnows, Parent.co and many others. She is an expert in the field of Literacy, a teacher of 15 years and Master’s degree holder in Literacy Education. She writes about parenting and education and when she's not writing, she's reading and laughing with her two tween kids.

2 Comments

  1. […] noodles? Try this fun activity that uses pool noodles to teach students fractions. Oh, the […]

  2. […] need are two different color noodles to make your own fraction game for students to practice. Our WeAreTeachers article has a great video to show how to do […]

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