Do you have a killer fractions project that you just love?? I made one involving designing a dartboard with specs written in fractions, but until it's done, I cannot decide whether I like the project or not. It has been quite tricky to get my Grade 7's through this project, much more difficult than I had imagined. I spent an entire lunch time with some of the weakest kids in the group, going through it step by step to show them why one-fourth of something means you are dividing by 4. And then, how to divide big numbers by single-digit numbers in order to calculate how many squared units would be in each fractional part.
After this individual calculation/planning phase (which, thank goodness, we're mostly all done with), they will design the dart board in groups, and then after they "build" the dart board, they will go back to working on individual written explanations of all the calculations. This is their first writing assignment -- possibly ever -- involving math!! Hurray! Big step for these itty-bitty incoming 7th-graders. But, it's all making me a bit stressed out that we still haven't managed to start the "regular Grade 7 curriculum." I hope that happens very soon, in a week or two. These kids are going to need to HAUL ASS to get through the "normal" Grade 7 algebra topics by December. sigh.