Title

Examining Pictorial Models and Virtual Manipulatives for Third-Grade Fraction Instruction

Document Type

Article

Journal/Book Title/Conference

Journal of Interactive Online Learning

Volume

11

Issue

3

Publication Date

Winter 2012

First Page

103

Last Page

120

Abstract

The purpose of this study was to examine pictorial representations, whether in static or dynamic modalities, and their impact on student learning in a classroom with low-achieving students. The investigation emerged from a classroom teacher’s action research project. During a three-week fraction unit, nineteen third-grade low-achieving students participated in two groups – a Dynamic Virtual Manipulatives (DVM) group using virtual manipulatives, and a Static Pictorial Models (SPM) group using pictorial models. Students in both the DVM and SPM groups showed significant improvements between the pre- and post-tests of fraction concepts. Students’ visualization skills increased while using pictorial models, in both the static and dynamic modalities.