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Fractions on Number Lines

Fractions on Number Lines

Introduction: We use rulers to measure length. Look at the ruler below. It is divided into inches. Each inch is also divided into four equal parts. The parts help us measure lengths between the inch marks.
Inches 0-6 Quarters

A number line is like a ruler. It helps us see what a number looks like. We use number lines when working with fractions. A fraction is a part of a whole. Seeing what this part of the whole looks like is useful when solving math problems.

Imagine you measure the length of a bug with a ruler. It is [math]3/4[/math] inch. You can show the fraction [math]3/4[/math] on a number line. The bottom number of the fraction shows the number of equal parts between 0 and 1. Since the bottom number is 4, the number line has 4 equal parts. Each part is [math]1/4[/math] of the distance between 0 and 1. The top number of the fraction shows how many of those equal parts were used. The bug is 3 of the equal parts long. A dot is drawn on the third line after 0 to show the 3 equal parts.

Number Lines 0-1 4 [math]= 3/4[/math]

This helps us see that the bug bigger than [math]2/4[/math] inch. We can also see that the bug is less than 1 inch.  


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