Math Basics: Reading and Writing Fractions

Uploaded by gcflearnfree on 17.03.2011

Fractions are a way to represent parts of a whole number. Suppose you cut a pizza into
8 slices. Each slice is a part, or fraction, of the whole pizza. You and your friends eat
7 slices. The 1 slice that remains is a fraction of the whole pizza: 1/8.
A fraction can also refer to a portion of a group of items. If one of your neighbors
has 3 pets -- 2 cats and 1 dog -- 1/3 of the pets are dogs, and 2/3 of the pets are cats.
A fraction has 2 parts. The denominator, written below the line in the fraction, tells us the
number of parts the whole has been divided into. The numerator, written above the line
in the fraction, tells us the number of parts we have.
When you read a fraction, you use regular numbers for the numerator. You use ordinal
numbers the numbers you use when you're putting things in orderfor the denominator.
For example, one over two is read "one-half." If the numerator is more than 1, then the
denominator is plural. For example, three over four is read "three-fourths." A good rule
to keep in mind for most numbers is to add "th" to the end, as in two-thirteenths,
or one-one hundredth.
These are the basics of reading and writing fractions.