I wanted to make this lesson a bit more interesting as well as incorporate opportunities for **connections **with other maths topics.

I knew my year 8 class students loved music so I devised a very simple poll on Rob Thomas (one of the students was going to his concert): like him, don’t like him, don’t know him. This was a good opportunity to revise Frequency Distribution.

Just by fluke, our 3 fractions turned out percentages of recurring decimals (another connection). In that sense, it’s really **not **a very good first example! Anyway, someone asked if the percentages will total a hundred (I love it when they think!). So, we added and of course it didn’t. We got a result of 99.8%. This opened up a discussion on the consequences of rounding/truncating decimals.

I made a statement that **the most accurate way to represent not whole (fractional) values is via fractions**. Nods all around until I asked, “‘Do you believe me?” The consensus was yes because I was the teacher. I was quick to point out that they should not always believe everything teachers say – they have to think if it’s reasonable; teachers are humans, after all, and can make mistakes. Besides, I really wanted to challenge my students to develop their thinking and reasoning.

So, I went back to the Frequency Distribution Table and 3 fractions. Adding the fractions naturally gave a total of 1 and nearly everyone said that’s 100%, as expected. Joy!

Were it a more able class (we stream our Maths classes), I could have pursued more connectionist opportunities but I did sense I’ve pushed enough today. I know I’ll refer back to this lesson when we actually do **Data** later in the school year. **The class was engaged because they knew the meaning behind the numbers. **

By the way, the statement is a fact I had truly learned in my previous career in IT. Particularly when I worked for a bank calculating interests, calculations in programs (software rather than curricular) were designed to stick to fractions as much as possible to minimise rounding errors.

**In summary **(more for my future reference),

*Learning strategies*: connectionism, motivation and engagement via meaningful and relevant examples, question/reason validity, compare/contrast

*Fractions, Decimals and Percentages* – provide different ways to represent fractional values, of which fractions are the most accurate