Fair Shares: Predict Equal Shares

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Use this activity to build division and number sense into any snack time or whenever there is a limited set of things to share among a group: If we deal these out, could everyone get two pieces? five pieces? more? Predict how much everyone will get, then try it and see. For a harder variation, try to find a way to divide up the food so that there is just one item left. Available as a web page, downloadable pdf, and in Spanish. [Activity is publicly available through a web crawler capture on Archive.org.]

Quick Guide

Preparation Time:
Under 5 minutes

Learning Time:
5 to 10 minutes

Estimated Materials Cost:
1 cent - $1 per group of students

Age Range:
Ages 4 - 14

Resource Type:


Materials List (per group of students)

  • Up to 25 countable food items, such as crackers or baby carrots
  • Serving supplies (plates, napkins, etc.)


  • Mathematics
    • Number and Operations
      • Fractions
      • Multiples and Factors
      • Number Systems
      • Operations
    • Representation
  • The Nature of Technology
    • The Design Process
      • Problem Solving
  • The Nature of Science
    • The Scientific Process
      • Asking Questions
      • Conducting Investigations
      • Formulating Explanations

Informal Categories

  • Food and Cooking


To use this activity, learners need to:

  • see

Learning styles supported:

  • Involves teamwork and communication skills
  • Uses STEM to solve real-world problems
  • Involves hands-on or lab activities


Foreign language versions of this resource:

Access Rights:

  • Free access


Source Collection

  • Mixing in Math


  • , © 2010, TERC, Inc., MA., 2010

Funding Source:

  • NSF, ESI-0406675 and DRL-0713537