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Math for Kids23 chapters | 325 lessons

Instructor:
*Nicole Huppenthal*

Nicole has taught at both the elementary and high school levels, specializing in gifted education, elementary education, and technology.

This lesson keeps you moving along the path of mastering fractions. We'll unwrap the steps to multiplying compound fractions, also known as mixed numbers.

Whether you like to bake treats in the kitchen, using 1/2 teaspoon salt and 1/8 teaspoon baking powder or work with tools to build something new, cutting 3/4'' off a piece of wood, you know that fractions are everywhere. So, it's helpful to know how to work with them to get our projects done.

We already know that fractions are an equal part of a whole, and when you are multiplying fractions, you are simply adding together groups of the same number. Multiplication is just a faster way to get there. So let's get started!

A **compound fraction**, also known as a mixed number, is a combination of a fraction and a whole number. You will remember that when you multiply fractions, you go straight across, multiplying the numerators, numbers on top, and then multiplying the denominators, the numbers on the bottom. In order to multiply compound fractions, we first have to convert the compound fraction into an **improper fraction**, which is a fraction whose numerator is larger than its denominator. Let's take a look.

We take the whole number in front of the fraction and multiply it by the denominator. In our example of 4 1/3, we will multiply 4 (our whole number) x 3 (the denominator of our fraction). We need to know how many total parts we have.

We take this product, 12 (4 x 3 = 12) and add it to the numerator that we already have, in this example 1 for the total, 12 + 1 = 13. We still leave this number over the same denominator, 3. So, we now have an improper fraction (numerator is greater than the denominator) of 13/3.

If you are multiplying two compound fractions, you will need to do this to each one.

We have finally arrived at the heart of this lesson: Multiplying compound fractions.

Now that we have converted our compound fraction into an improper fraction, we can easily multiply it with another fraction. This is a skill you already have, but let's just try one example before moving on:

- Multiply the numerators straight across.
- Multiply the denominators straight across.
- Convert - change an improper fraction back to a mixed number.

To really test our skills, this time we are going to multiply two compound fractions together. Our steps are as follows:

- Convert each compound fraction into an improper fraction
- Multiply the numerators straight across.
- Multiply the denominators straight across.
- Convert - change an improper fraction back to a mixed number.
- Simplify, if necessary

The problem is: 2 1/3 x 3 1/2. Get a piece of paper and follow the steps above to do this problem. Don't scroll down until you have given it a try!

Did you get 2 1/3? I hope so! And don't forget... practice makes perfect.

Multiplying **compound fractions** requires that we first convert them into **improper fractions**. Once we have completed this conversion, we multiply like we always do with fractions: numerator times numerator and denominator times denominator. Many times this answer will need to be converted back to a mixed number and then simplified, but if you take these problems step-by-step, you will reach the correct answer in no time!

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14 in chapter 3 of the course:

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Math for Kids23 chapters | 325 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
- Numerator & Denominator 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? 3:48
- How to Add Mixed Fractions with Different Denominators
- Multiplying 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
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- Rules for Subtracting Fractions
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- Rules for Dividing Fractions
- Ordering Fractions on a Number Line
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- 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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