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Math for Kids23 chapters | 325 lessons

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Lesson Transcript

Instructor:
*T.J. Hoogsteen*

T.J. is currently a grade 5 teacher and Vice-Principal. He has a master's degree in Educational Administration and is working toward an Ed.D. in Educational Leadership.

Have you ever heard numbers called cardinal numbers? Have you wondered what that means? This lesson will explain what they are and also give some examples.

What are cardinal numbers? This is an interesting question because the word cardinal makes me picture a couple different things. First, I think of the famous fierce red bird. Could cardinal numbers be referring to their population? Or another thought that comes to mind is the professional baseball team. The players all wear jerseys with numbers on them; could this be what is meant by cardinal numbers?

The truth is neither of those possibilities answers the question as to what cardinal numbers are. **Cardinal numbers** are numbers that tell how many of something there are, such as one, two, three, four, or five. They answer the question, How many? For example: How many baseballs are in this picture?

The answer to this question is that there are 6 baseballs in the picture. Therefore, the cardinal number is 6. One important thing to remember is that cardinal numbers do not include decimals or fractions; they are only used for simple counting and show quantity.

There are a couple of other types of numbers that can be confused for cardinal numbers, and they are ordinal numbers and nominal numbers. **Ordinal numbers** tell the position of something on a list. For example, words like first, second, and third are ordinal numbers. An example of a question using ordinal numbers is: What type of ball is third in line?

Looking at this picture, a baseball is third in line.

The last type of numbers are **nominal numbers**, and they are used only as a name or to identify something. An example of using nominal numbers can be shown with this picture:

What type of ball is in this picture? An 8 ball. In this situation, the number is identifying what the object is, so it is a nominal number.

Knowing all three types of numbers is important for a situation where all three types of numbers could be used like this: How many 99s are in the third row?

66 | 99 | 21 | 55 |

55 | 99 | 66 | 99 |

99 | 99 | 44 | 99 |

Looking at the table, there are three 99s, that means the cardinal number is 3 because it tells how many there are. The ordinal number is third because the question asks for the number in the third row, and the nominal number is 99 because it names what is being asked for.

**Cardinal numbers** are numbers that tell how many of something there are and answers the question, How many? They do not include fractions or decimals because they are only used for simple counting. Finally, remember don't get cardinal numbers confused with **ordinal numbers**, which tell the position, or **nominal numbers**, which name or identify something.

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Math for Kids23 chapters | 325 lessons

{{courseNav.course.topics.length}} chapters | {{courseNav.course.mDynamicIntFields.lessonCount}} lessons | {{course.flashcardSetCount}} flashcard set{{course.flashcardSetCoun > 1 ? 's' : ''}}

- What is an Abundant Number?
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- Finding the Sum of Consecutive Numbers 4:10
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- What Are Figurate Numbers? - Definition & Examples
- What Are Opposite Numbers? - Definition & Examples 2:53
- What Are Rectangular Numbers? - Definition & Examples 3:05
- Like & Unlike Terms
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- Is Zero a Natural Number? 2:37
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