Comparing Fractions & Decimals: Lesson for Kids

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  • 0:04 The Same But Different
  • 0:45 Converting a Fraction…
  • 1:24 Comparing Fractions to…
  • 3:18 Lesson Summary
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Lesson Transcript
Instructor: Lynn Knott

Lynn has taught 1st and 3rd grade and has a master's degree in Educational Leadership.

Fractions and decimals are both ways to express amounts that are less than a whole number. In this lesson, you will learn how to convert a fraction into a decimal so that you can then compare two numbers.

The Same But Different

Your teacher wants you to compare two types of candy: a chocolate bar and a piece of bubble gum. She asks you to name all of the things these treats have in common. You say they are both small, sweet, and delicious! It was easy to compare these candies.

Now she asks you to compare a fraction to a decimal number. This is a little trickier than comparing the two candies. Even though fractions and decimal numbers can both be used to represent the same numbers, they don't look the same.

So, before we can compare them, they both need to be formatted the same way. The easiest way to do this is to convert the fraction to a decimal. Let's take a look at how to do this.

Converting a Fraction to a Decimal

When converting a fraction to a decimal, it means you change it from a fraction to a decimal number. This change requires you to use your long division skills. Simply divide the numerator by the denominator to get a decimal number.

The fraction 1/4 being converted to the decimal .25
Image of the fraction 1/4 being converted to the decimal .25.

Pretty easy, right? By using long division to divide the numerator of the fraction by the denominator, you converted the fraction 1/4 to the decimal 0.25. So the decimal 0.25 is the same thing as the fraction 1/4, they just look different. Knowing how to convert fractions to decimals will make comparing the numbers so much easier, so let's get busy comparing!

Comparing Fractions to Decimals

Now, on the other hand, comparing means you look at two numbers and decide which one is greater than, less than, or equal to the other number. These signs will help us:

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