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Understanding and Working with Equivalent Fractions

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Learning text on the topic Understanding and Working with Equivalent Fractions

Equivalent Fractions

Equivalent fractions are a fundamental concept in mathematics. They are fractions that, though they might look different, actually represent the same value. Understanding equivalent fractions is essential for working with trickier maths problems, such as adding and subtracting fractions, where fractions need to have the same denominators. Let’s explore what equivalent fractions are, and how we can find equivalent fractions!

Understanding Equivalent Fractions

Equivalent fractions are pairs or groups of fractions with different numerators and denominators that represent the same part of a whole. For example, $\frac{1}{2}$ and $\frac{2}{4}$ are equivalent fractions.

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There are two ways to find equivalent fractions:

  • One way of finding equivalent fractions, as we see above, is to create visual representations of the fractions and compare them. When you do this, you must use the same size bar or circle to ensure your models are accurate. Then, you can compare them together to see if they are equivalent or not.

  • Another way to find equivalent fractions, is to multiply or divide the numerator and denominator of a fraction by the same non-zero number.

For example, if we multiply the numerator and denominator of $\frac{3}{6}$ by three, we get an equivalent fraction of $\frac{9}{18}$.

27593_Equivalent_Fractions-02.svg

Remember, the numerator is the top number of a fraction, indicating how many parts are taken, and the denominator is the bottom number, showing the total number of parts in a whole.

Let’s check your understanding so far with some quick questions!

What do you need to multiply the numerator and denominator of a fraction by to make an equivalent fraction?
If you multiply the numerator and denominator of $\frac{1}{3}$ by 2, will you get an equivalent fraction?

Equivalent Fractions – Guided Practice

Let’s practise finding equivalent fractions together using $\frac{3}{5}$. For this example, let’s find an equivalent fraction with a denominator of 15. In this instance, we know we need to multiply the denominator, 5, by 3 to get 15. We would also need to do the same to the numerator.

What is the first step?
What is the next step?
What is an equivalent fraction for $\frac{3}{5}$?

Equivalent Fractions – Exercises

Find an equivalent fraction for $\frac{4}{7}$ where the denominator is 14.
Find an equivalent fraction for $\frac{2}{3}$ where the denominator is 15.
Compare $\frac{3}{5}$ and $\frac{2}{4}$. Are they equivalent fractions?

Equivalent Fractions – Summary

Equivalent fractions are different fractions that represent the same value. There are two ways you can find equivalent fractions:

  • To find an equivalent fraction, multiply or divide both the numerator and denominator by the same number.
  • Create visual models of given fractions and then compare them to see if they are equivalent.

Knowing how to calculate or find equivalent fractions is helpful when adding or subtracting fractions with different denominators.

Explore more about fractions, such as how to Generate Equivalent Fractions and other fraction topics through interactive practice problems, engaging videos and printable worksheets on our educational platform. Enhance your learning journey with these resources!

If you feel like you need extra practice, then review Equivalent Fractions. After, come back and have another go at the problems on this page.

Equivalent Fractions – Frequently Asked Questions

What are equivalent fractions?
How do you find an equivalent fraction?
Are $\frac{1}{2} $ and $\frac{3}{6}$ equivalent fractions?
Why are equivalent fractions important?
Can equivalent fractions have different denominators?
How can I visually check if two fractions are equivalent?
What happens if I multiply the numerator but not the denominator by the same number?
Is there a limit to how many equivalent fractions a fraction can have?
Can equivalent fractions help in solving real-life problems?
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