Math Lesson – Adding like fractions (with a common denominator)

To add fractions there are three simple steps:

Step 1: Make sure the bottom numbers (the denominators) are the same.

Step 2: Add the top numbers (the numerators), put that answer over the denominator.

Step 3: Simplify the fraction (if needed)

We believe that children learn from multiple examples in multiple situations.

I’m sure you, oh dear reader, are perfect. However, I’ve seen classes where the only examples of fractions were circles and slices of pizza. I’ve also seen way too many math textbooks that I felt did not give enough examples and explanation before expecting students to work a bunch of problems.

Before you have your students dive into answering problems, please try an extra 5-10 minute mini-lesson. We’ve done this one for you.

Here for your use are a couple of PowerPoints with examples of adding and comparing fractions with like (common) denominators.

If you prefer video, we have the same in video format.

Also, just thought I’d mention we’re building a whole teacher resource site. Check out the much longer equivalent fractions lesson plan there.


 Adding with like denominators.pdf  Adding with like denominators
 Adding Fractions With Like Denominators 2  Adding Fractions With Like Denominators 2

How to add like fractions in Video

Just to make it even clearer, here’s a video explaining how to add like fractions with examples:

End your class with style learning fractions by playing Fish Lake


Description: In Fish Lake, players practice with Fractions while learning math problem-solving strategies.

Intructions: MAC OS X,  Win 7, Win 8, Win 10.

NOTE: If you get a message about ‘unidentified developer’ here is how to fix it in 5 seconds or less.

Recommended for 4-6 grade
Math Standards alignment 5-6 grade
Math topics Fractions
Culture Ojibwe
Available for Mac, MAC OS X, Win 7 Win 8, Win 10

Download for MAC


Download for Windows

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *