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In this section you will learn to subtract a fraction from a mixed number or a whole number.
Please review these sections if necessary:
Example 1
Note that the fractions have the same denominators and the first fraction is larger than the second: |
Step 1: Write down the whole number without changing it.
Step 2: Carry out the subtraction of the fractions.
Step 3: Add the result to the whole number you wrote earlier:
Example 2
In this example, the fractions have the same denominators but the first fraction is smaller than the second. |
The first step is to change the mixed number like this:
Reduce the whole number by 1. |
So now we have:
Which is easy to subtract! |
Example 3
In this example, the fractions have different or unlike denominators. |
The first thing to do is to change the fractions to their equivalent fraction forms so they have like denominators.
Go through the relevant multiplication tables till you have a common multiple. In this example the common multiple is 15.
Use the equivalent fractions to subtract:
Note: If the first fraction is smaller than the second, follow the procedure in example 2 shown above.
The main idea to subtracting a fraction from a whole number is to divide one of the whole numbers into the required number of portions.
Example:
(we have to subtract three-quarters from four wholes) We divide one of the wholes into four quarters as shown: |
This allows us to rewrite the whole number as a mixed number: |
Now we can do the subtraction easily to get the answer: |
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