Oil and Water Don't Mix, but They Do Teach Fractions

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Cindy L. Andersonis an assistant professor at National-Louis University, Milwaukee, Wisconsin

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Kevin M. Andersonwas director of K-12 instruction in Kenosha, Wisconsin, when this article was written.

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Edward J. Wenzelteaches at Viterbo College, LaCross, WI 54601.

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nderstanding and using fractions have traditionally been difficult tasks for students. National assessment results (NCTM 1988) show that even older students experience difficulty in working with and understanding fractions. The National Center for Educational Statistics (1990) reported that only 46 percent of twelfth graders who took the National Assessment of Educational Progress could consistently solve problems involving fractions. Baroody and Hume (1991) suggest that student errors in fractions may be caused by poor understanding of underlying concepts, as well as by an inability to recognize accurate visual representations.

Footnotes

Cindy Anderson professional interests include devising instructional strategies for students who have disabilities.

Ed Wenzel is interested in early childhood and elementary teacher education and curriculum development.

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Teaching Children Mathematics
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