A fraction is used to express part of a whole. It may be written in the form a / b where a is called the numerator and b is called the denominator. You will now be able to explore fractions interactively using an applet.
click on the button above "click here to start" and MAXIMIZE the window obtained.
Use the top slider (NUMERATOR) to set the numerator of the fraction to a certain value, 2 for example. Use the bottom slider (DENOMINATOR) to set the denominator of the fraction to a certain value, 5 for example. 2 parts of the bar are colored red, the total number of parts is 5. Hence 2 / 5 of the bar are colored red.
The applet also displays the decimal and percentage equivalent to a given fraction.
Use the two sliders to model the fractions 1 / 2 also called one half. What percentage is it? What is the decimal number equivalent to 1 / 2.
Use the two sliders to model the fractions 1 / 3 also called one third. What percentage is it? What is the decimal number equivalent to 1 / 3?.
Use the two sliders to model the fractions 1 / 4 also called one quarter. What percentage is it? What is the decimal number equivalent to 1 / 4.
Set the numerator a and the denominator b to equal values, 5 for example. What are the percentage and decimal number equivalent to 5 / 5? Explain your findings. Do the above experiment for different values of a = b if necessary.
To find the decimal number corresponding to a given fraction, you divide the numerator by the denominator and to find the percentage corresponding to the same fraction multiply the decimal number by 100.
Example: fraction 2 / 5 , divide 2 by 5 to obtain 0.4 which is the decimal corresponding to 2 / 5. Now multiply 0.4 by 100 to obtain 40 \% which is the percentage corresponding to the fraction 2 / 5.
Use pencil, paper and a calculator to find the decimal number and the percentage corresponding to the following fractions:0 / 2 , 1 / 5, 2 / 7 and 3 / 10. Then use the applet to check your answers.
Use the applet to check that the fractions 1 / 2, 2 / 4, 4 / 8 and 5 / 10 all have the same decimal number and percentage representations. Explain why. Can you find other fractions with the same decimal and percentage values as these fractions? Go to this interactive tutorial on equivalent fractions to learn more.