What are fractions?

Mathematics can be fun, that’s right. There’s maths all around us, every time we quantify something, there’s math involved. A fraction is a word that originated from Latin. In Latin, Fractus means broken. It is entirely too apt, the meaning fits beautifully with its purpose. Since a fraction represents the part of a whole, or more generally any number of equal parts. That well-known quote, that goes something like this, glass half full, or glass half empty” has also made use of fractions.

Fractions in maths is painful if you do not grasp the underlying concept behind it. Fractions form an important part of our daily lives. We have to willingly or unwillingly share that yummy pizza amongst our friends and families. Three people, four slices. Ouch.

If you learn and visualize fractions the easy way, it will be more fun and exciting. Slice an apple, and we get fractions.

Fill half a glass of water. What do you see? 1/2 glass is full. Or 1/2 glass is empty. This 1/2 is fractions where 1 is the Numerator that is, the number of parts we have. And 2 is the Denominator, the number of parts the whole glass is divided into. You can quickly add fractions with the same denominator. Just add the numerator, keeping the denominator same.

A fraction simply tells one, how many parts of a whole there are. It is symbolized by using a slash between two numbers. Like this 2/4. The number on top is the numerator, while the number below is the denominator. In the given example, the number on top 2 happens to be the numerator while, the number on the bottom, 4 will end up being the denominator. Now we shall visualize this fraction. Imagine a pie with four slices. Taking two slices of pie for yourself would mean that you have two out of the four. Hence, you represent it as 2/4. There is also a concept called proper fractions and improper fractions. The proper fractions are those where the numerator is more than the denominator and the improper fractions, as one can deduce, is the fractions where the numerator happens to be greater than the denominator. For example, 8/9 will be a proper fraction since numerator<denominator and 9/8 will be an improper fraction since denominator<numerator.

And then there’s the concept of like and unlike fractions. In this like fractions are those fractions, as the name suggests, that are alike or same. While, on the other hand, the unlike fractions, are those that are dissimilar. For example, take ½ and 2/4; they are alike, since if you simplify it mathematically, you will get the same fraction. And ½ and 1/3 are unlike fractions.

So, 1/2 +1/2 =2/2 that is one full glass, which is 100 %. Yes, if you are clear infractions then percentages is already covered. Just multiply the fraction with 100.

Adding and subtracting fractions

If the Denominator is same, adding and subtracting fractions is an easy task. But how do you add 2/4 + 3/9?

Or how will you solve 6/12- 3/27? This is adding and subtracting fractions with unlike denominators.

Is 12/6 also a fraction? Yes, it is. It is called an improper fraction. But 6/12 is a proper fraction.

6/12 is an equivalent fraction to 3/6 as both equals to 1/2. We can multiply fractions, divide fractions, divide fractions by fractions and so much more.

A lot of word problems on fractions appear in our textbooks to compare fractions, multiply mixed numbers and improper fractions, decimals, and fractions. Confusing ? It will become easy if you visualize the number fractions and then solve systematically.

Byju’s provides students with NCERT solutions for Fractions so that students can practice and solve problems easily. For NCERT solutions click here – Fractions

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