Rational Number Placement on the Number Line

byJeffrey Rossiter

The students whom I’ve been teaching have always seen the various ways of writing numbers symbolically – fractions, decimals, and integers - as siloed representations of quantities with no relation between them. My unit uses Number Talks and other discussion based techniques to remedy this problem. The number line is the primary focus and is used to show that the various symbolic schemes are just ways of naming numbers. This unit is remedial in nature and can be taught as intervention as well. But because of its position at the 7th/8th grade level where students are deepening their fluency of number sense topics, this unit will set up students to be successful mathematical problems solvers in the future. This unit is intended to be taught first, with Aaron Bingea’s unit titled: Adding and Subtracting Rational Numbers on the Number Line taught second. While my unit focuses on the foundational skill of placing various classes of numbers on the number line, Aaron’s unit will deal with the operations of addition and subtraction.

(Recommended for Mathematics, Grades 6-8)

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