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Name of Activity:

Candy Bar Fractions

Academic content:


Purpose of Activity:

To give students a clearer understanding of the relationship between caloric expenditure and exercise. Also, to give students a real world use for fractions as they relate to daily life.


Knowledge of how to program a pedometer which gives a calorie expenditure. Basic understanding of fractions and division. Experience participating in aerobic activities. Knowledge of how to read the nutrition label.

Suggested Grade Level:


Materials Needed:

Candy bars which are scored to easily divide into fractional parts, Pedometers which calculate caloric expenditure.

Physical activity:

cardiovascular fitness

Description of Idea

After an introduction/review of fractions, students are each given a candy bar or other segmented food which can be easily divided into parts. Each student studies the nutrition label and determines how many calories are in each scored part. The students then estimate how many calories they can burn in a PE class of using different activities like aerobics, jumping rope, riding a scooter, shooting baskets or walking. The students participate in a class using one of the activities (or students may choose) wearing the pedometers. At the end of class, each student records his or her caloric expenditure. Students may eat only as many fractional pieces of the candy/food which would be equivalent to the calories burned.


Any food which is scored could be substituted for candy. Diabetic children can use crackers. Calculators may be used. Any fat burning activity could be used, so the lesson is very adaptable.

Assessment Ideas:

Have children write about the experience. Most are surprised at how much exercise is needed to burn even a portion of a candy bar. Students can write up the activity as a lab-type report and record personal data. Papers can be written from a variety of perspectives, depending upon the level of the students. Action plans for healthy eating can also be written to assess student understanding of the caloric content of foods.

Adaptations for Students with Disabilities

Simply do activities which are appropriate for the students and give them an aerobic benefit.

Submitted by Cathy  Lowry who teaches at North Ridge Elementary in Raleigh , NC . Thanks for contributing to PE Central! Posted on PEC: 6/5/2001.
Viewed 30302 times since 8/24/2001.

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Candy Bar Fractions

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