Eliminating Fractions in Division
Date: 11/20/2003 at 18:58:29 From: Duckie Subject: Dividing a whole number and a fraction The question is: Make an equivalent division problem for 5 divided by 1/3 by multiplying both the dividend and divisor by three. Then find the quotient. I keep reading it over and over but I just don't understand what they're asking.
Date: 11/21/2003 at 01:29:03 From: Doctor Ian Subject: Re: Dividing a whole number and a fraction Hi Duckie, Let's look at something simpler. Suppose we have something like 12 divided by 4 = ? or ___ 4 ) 12 = ? Note that we can write it as a fraction, too: 12 -- = ? 4 These are all just ways of writing the same thing. Now, what's interesting about the fraction form is that we can see that if we multiply the numerator and denominator by the same thing, we change the _appearance_ of the fraction without changing the _value_: 12 5 60 -- * - = -- 4 5 20 Does that make sense? Well, it means we could do the same thing in the other forms, too: ___ _______ 4 ) 12 = (4*5) ) (12*5) ___ = 20 ) 60 Now, this is useful when we've got a fraction, because we can multiply both numbers by the denominator of the fraction, e.g., ____ __________ 5 ) 2/9 = (5*9) ) (2/9 * 9) __ = 45 ) 2 Does this make sense? - Doctor Ian, The Math Forum http://mathforum.org/dr.math/
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