ERIC Number: EJ907057
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2010-Dec
Reference Count: 0
Dividing Fractions: What Is the Divisor's Role?
Coughlin, Heather A.
Mathematics Teaching in the Middle School, v16 n5 p280-287 Dec 2010
Dividing by fractions is considered by many to be one of the most complicated procedures in elementary mathematics. The computations are not only complicated but also challenging to explain in the context of a word problem. In this article, the author discusses the role of the divisor in the concept of division by fractions. She examines three work samples and common misconceptions about the role of the divisor. The three samples were chosen because they represent the errors the author continually encounters in her prebaccalaureate preservice teachers' math class. She offers insights based on the measurement model of division approached by repeated subtraction to clarify the misconceptions. (Contains 7 figures.)
Descriptors: Misconceptions, Mathematics Instruction, Computation, Preservice Teacher Education, Arithmetic, Middle Schools, Secondary School Mathematics, Word Problems (Mathematics), Mathematical Concepts
National Council of Teachers of Mathematics. 1906 Association Drive, Reston, VA 20191-1502. Tel: 800-235-7566; Tel: 703-620-3702; Fax: 703-476-2970; e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org; Web site: http://www.nctm.org/publications/
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Middle Schools
Authoring Institution: N/A