Proportional thinking - Percentages fractions and decimals

This resource has been developed in partnership with the NSW Mathematics Strategy Professional Learning team, Curriculum Early Years and Primary Learners, and Literacy and Numeracy.

Using the resource

This resource is the second section of a four-part resource supporting proportional thinking. Use this resource in conjunction with the other resources in this series in order to support a connected network of critical mathematical concepts, skills and understanding.

Supporting tasks

Full instructions on how to use each of these tasks- including materials, related tasks and learning intentions - are included in the resource, available for download on this page.

Task 1: Matchy Matchy

This activity is an adaption of Translating between Fractions, Decimals and Percents from MARS, (2015).

Core learning: Percentages have fraction and decimal equivalents.

  • Variation 1: Students make a poster to display their cards in order and include justifications of their matching sets of cards and details of whether they changed their mind about the placement of a card.
  • Variation 2: To support recall of percentage conversion facts, completed card sets may be used to play familiar games such as Go Fish or Memory, or used to develop for a new game, for example pairs of students select a card and challenge their opponent to guess their card within a limited number of guesses, such as, my card is greater than 50% but less than 3434

Task 2: Percentage strips

Core learning: Percentages are fractions with a denominator of 100 and they can be expressed as fractions or decimals.

  • Variation 1: Use 10 cm strips which enables students to represent 1 cm = 10%.

  • Variation 2: Have students draw diagrams or paste and label their paper strips to demonstrate their reasoning.

  • Variation 3: Create a display showing a range of strips that have been increased or decreased by a percentage, such as 125%, 110%, 80%, 90%, 45%. Students should also display a 100%-length strip and record their methods for determining each strip’s length.

Task 3: Calculating benchmark percentages

Core learning: Make connections between benchmark fractions and the equivalent percentages.

  • Variation: Students order decimals and fractions on a number line.

Task 4: Dual scale number lines

Core learning: Using dual scale number line as a tool to solve problems involving proportional relationships

Task 5: First principle percentages

This activity is an adaption of First principles percentage from Lovitt & Clarke (1988).

Core learning: Percentages represent a proportion of the whole and are used to represent and compare relative size.


  • Numeracy

Business Unit:

  • Educational Standards
Return to top of page Back to top