Some Basic Terms and Rules of Fractions
- The numbers in a fraction are called the numerator, on the top, and the denominator, on the bottom. numerator/denominator
- Proper fractions have a numerator smaller than the denominator.
Examples include 1/2, 3/4 and 7/8.
- Improper fractions have a numerator larger than the denominator.
Examples include 5/4, 3/2 and 101/7.
Strategies for comparing fractions :
Draw a picture : This strategy can work with smaller fractions, but starts to get complicated with larger fractions.
Compare with like numerators.
When the numerators are the same, you are comparing the denominator. The larger the denominator, the smaller the pieces will be. Therefore, the smaller denominator will give you the larger fraction.
Compare to a benchmark fraction
Determine how the fraction relates to ½ . This can help determine the larger or smaller fractions.
Compare ¼ and ¾ with benchmark as ½.
Compare missing pieces.
The fraction with the smallest piece missing will be the largest fraction.
In the figure above you will see that the 7/8 portion is 1 piece less than a whole and so is 2/3. But the missing piece of 7/8 is smaller than the one of 2/3.
Hence 7/8 is bigger than 2/3.
Change one denominator to make a common denominator
Sometimes you only have to change one of the denominators to make common denominators.
Let’s compare ¾ and 7/8.
You can use a fraction chart to compare more complex fractions. The fraction chart can be used for showing the part whole relationship: how many one-thirds make up one?
Another important use of the chart is to show equivalent fractions.
Equivalent Fractions :
Two fractions are equivalent if they are of the same size and same shape