Q&A #596

Factor-Label Method

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From: Claudia (for Teacher2Teacher Service)
Date: Sep 25, 1998 at 07:26:39
Subject: Re: Factor-Label Method

Factor-Label is a fairly simple process. It essentially means that the
student multiplies by quantities of one.  For example, if I wanted to convert
20 cm to  ____ km?  I would set up the problem with the appropriate
conversion in terms of "ones" as follows:

     20 cm X 1m/100cm X 1km/1000m =

Deciding whether to multiply by 100cm/1m or 1m/100cm depends upon which unit
of measurement you would like to "cancel out". Your daughter must learn the
basic conversions like 1m = 100 cm, 1000g = 1 kg, etc.  Once she understands
those relationships, then she can set up the appropriate factor-label that
she needs to convert from one type of measurement to another!

Hope this helps!

 -Claudia, for the Teacher2Teacher service

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