Teaching Percent of Number
When teaching students to find the percent of a number (or the part or whole), I introduce two different ways to find the missing number  using proportions and using equations. Since different students often prefer different methods, I teach both, have them practice both, and then let them choose the one they like better. I've given an example of each method below.
The Percent of a Number Wheel shown here includes both methods. Each section of the wheel includes an equation and two examples, with room to solve using both methods. There's also a little room on the wheel (or around it) to add extra notes or your own examples, if you'd like. Around the wheel are a few practice problems that can be completed together or individually.
Method 1: Proportion
1) Substitute the given values into the %/100 = IS/OF proportion. Use a variable for the missing number. 2) Solve the proportion to find the missing value. Example: What is 15% of 70?
Method 2: Equation
1) When given the percent, change it to a decimal. 2) Substitute the given values into the equation. Use a variable for the missing number. 3) Solve the equation. * If finding the percent, be sure the answer is in percent form (multiply the decimal answer by 100). Example: What is 15% of 70? part = % ∙ whole x = 0.15 ∙ 70 x = 10.5 When we work with the equations, I do manipulate the equations to show students how they are all versions of the same basic equation. For example, if we start with part = % ∙ whole and we're looking for the whole (say the part is 35 and the percent is 25), we end up with 35 = 0.25 ∙ x. From solving algebraic equations, students know that to find x, both sides will be divided by 0.25, which gives them x = 35/0.25 (whole = part/%) If you decide to use the wheel, I hope you and your students like it!
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AuthorHi, I'm Ellie! My mission here is to support teachers as they work to provide engaging, meaningful experiences for their students. I've been in education for 25 years, teaching all subject areas at both the elementary and middle school levels, and am here to share what I've learned through those years, as well as what I continue to learn. I hope you'll find some ideas or resources here to help you out! Categories
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