Friday, April 12, 2013

What is a ratio?

Welcome back to More with Music!

It's been awhile since my last post.  I've been working as usual, and continue to write and record songs.  Hopefully, I can share more songs here from here on out and well into the summer break as well.

In school settings, students are taught many different math skills and concepts.  One of these is ratios.

To start with, ratios can be difficult to teach to students with cognitive disabilities.  The purposes for calculating ratios needs to be clearly explained and concrete examples are extremely important to implement within lessons.

Recently, I wrote a song to help teach the concept of ratios.  The middle school students I work with really enjoyed the song.  I added hand motions to the song to involve the kinesthetic learners.

Here's the song, and the lyrics (with hand motions notes), are below.

Part to part (Put right hand fist out, palm down, in front of you, followed by left hand fist out) or
part to whole (Put right hand fist out as before, then connect left fist to right, to form a whole)
Ratios compare quantities, you know.
(Elbows bent, both hands with palms up, move hands, alternating up and down, as if you are weighing/balancing) quantities of something)

A ratio can tell you how much of one thing there is compared to another thing.
A ratio can also tell you how much of one thing there is compared to the total number of things.

The students really enjoyed this song.  I'm pretty sure it was the hand motions that sold it for them.  :)  
As always, thanks for stopping by and stay tuned to additional song posts soon (for real :) ).