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Math for Kids23 chapters | 326 lessons

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Instructor:
*Bethany Calderwood*

Bethany has taught special education in grades PK-5 and has a master's degree in special education.

A fraction gives information using two parts. In this lesson you will learn the two parts of a fraction and what they mean. You will also learn how to read a fraction.

What is a fraction? A fraction is a number that represents a part of a whole. Here are some examples of fractions:

What is a fraction for? Well, imagine I made a cake. Some of my friends like chocolate frosting, some of them like vanilla frosting, and some of them like coconut frosting. I decided to use all three. I split the cake into three equal parts, and frosted one part chocolate, one part vanilla, and one part coconut.

I can use a fraction to say how much of the cake has chocolate frosting. I can also use a fraction to say how much of the cake has vanilla frosting and how much has coconut frosting. This is just one example of a time it is helpful to use fractions.

My cake is labeled with three fractions. We will look at the fraction on the chocolate section of cake:

When you read a fraction, first you say the name of the top number. Then you say the bottom number as an **ordinal**, or positional number (third, fourth, fifth, sixth, etc.). So the fraction on the chocolate section of the cake, which has a 1 on top and a 3 on the bottom, is said 'one-third.'

Now that we know how to read the fraction, we should find out what the numbers in the fraction mean. Let's start with the bottom number. The bottom number is called the **denominator**. The denominator tells us how many equal parts the whole has been broken into. My cake is broken into 3 equal parts, so the denominator of my fraction is 3.

The top number of the fraction is called the **numerator**. The numerator tells how many parts the fraction represents. The numerator of the chocolate fraction is 1. This tells me that 1 part of the cake has chocolate frosting. One-third means 1 part out of 3.

Look at the pictures of pizza. Here are some more examples of fractions.

Kim's pizza is split into 2 equal parts. 1 part has pepperoni. The fraction of her pizza that has pepperoni is one-half.

Martin's pizza is split into 3 equal parts. 2 parts have pepperoni. The fraction of his pizza that has pepperoni is two-thirds.

Greg's pizza is split into 4 equal parts. 3 parts have pepperoni. The fraction of his pizza that has pepperoni is three-fourths.

A fraction represents part of a whole. The numerator, the number on top, tells how many parts you have. The denominator, the number on the bottom, tells how many parts are in the whole. If you know these two fraction parts, you will be able to understand the information a fraction gives.

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6 in chapter 3 of the course:

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Math for Kids23 chapters | 326 lessons

- Comparing Fractions: Lesson for Kids
- Equivalent Fractions: Lesson for Kids
- How to Add Fractions: Lesson for Kids
- Fractions Games for Kids
- Fractions to Decimals: Lesson for Kids
- Fractions: Lesson for Kids
- Decimals: Lesson for Kids
- Multiplying Fractions by Whole Numbers: Lesson for Kids
- How to Simplify Fractions: Lesson for Kids
- Improper Fractions: Lesson for Kids
- What is a Benchmark Fraction on a Number Line?
- How to Add Mixed Fractions with Different Denominators
- Multiplying Compound Fractions
- Simplifying Compound Fractions
- Dividing Compound Fractions
- Adding Compound Fractions
- Subtracting Compound Fractions
- How to Subtract Fractions with Variables
- Multiplying Fractions with Like Denominators
- Subtracting Fractions with Like Denominators
- Reducing Fractions: Rules & Practice
- Definition of Simplest Form: Lesson for Kids
- How to Add Fractions with Unlike Denominators
- How to Subtract Fractions with Unlike Denominators
- Rules for Subtracting Fractions
- Rules for Multiplying Fractions
- Rules for Dividing Fractions
- Ordering Fractions on a Number Line
- Locating Fractions on a Number Line
- How to Add & Subtract Two Fractions with Like Denominators
- How to Find Equivalent Fractions on a Number Line
- How to Subtract Mixed Fractions with Unlike Denominators
- Go to Fractions for Elementary School

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