You may have already learned about fractions as areas of shapes.

We know that fractions show a number of equal size pieces (denominator) of a whole. For example, eighths are showing a number where eight equal size pieces will make a whole.

The number of parts selected (numerator) shows the value of the fraction.

Comparing the size of fractions

We can compare the size of fractions by using shapes to look at how large each fraction is. Watch this video to see how.

Remember!

When the fractions have the same size pieces (denominator), we can compare their size simply by looking at how many pieces are in the fraction (numerator).

Example

Question 1:

Which fraction is smaller?

$\frac{3}{6}$36

A

$\frac{4}{6}$46

B

$\frac{3}{6}$36

A

$\frac{4}{6}$46

B

Complements to one whole

Fractions are showing a number of parts (numerator) and the size of the part (denominator).

The denominator shows how many parts make one whole. If we want to know how many more parts to make one whole, we add the number of pieces to make up one whole. Watch this video to see how.

Example

question 2:

If I have 1 eighth, how many more eighths do I need to make a whole?

Remember!

When comparing fractions, if the denominator is the same, then we compare the numerator.

The denominator tells us how many parts make up one whole.