Multiplying Fractions

Multiplying equations involving fractions can often be intimidating to young learners, but this concept is actually quite simple to master. By following a few simple steps, your children will be able to multiply fractions, including whole numbers and mixed fractions, with ease.

Multiplying equations involving fractions can often be intimidating to young learners, but this concept is actually quite simple to master. By following a few simple steps, your children will be able to multiply fractions, including whole numbers and mixed fractions, with ease.

Multiplying fractions can be done by following three easy steps:

  1. Multiply the numerators (top numbers).
  2. Multiply the denominators (bottom numbers).
  3. Simplify the fraction to its simplest form.

Let’s take a look at an example to see how these concepts are applied:

Multiplying Fractions

First, multiply the numerators.

Multiplying Fractions

Next, multiply the denominators.

Multiplying Fractions with Whole Numbers

Finally, simplify your answer.  In this case, the numerator and denominator are both divisible by 2.

Multiplying Fractions

Now that your child knows how to multiply fractions, try tackling multiplying fractions with whole numbers.  The process is the same with one extra step:

  1. Turn the whole number into a fraction by giving it a denominator of 1.
  2. Multiply the numerators.
  3. Multiply the denominators.
  4. Simplify the fraction to its simplest form.

Try this example to put these concepts into practice:

Multiplying Fractions with Whole Numbers

First, turn the whole number into a fraction by making the numerator 9 and the denominator 1.

Multiplying Fractions with Whole Numbers

Now, multiply the numerators.

Multiplying Fractions with Whole Numbers

Next, multiply the denominators.

Multiplying Fractions with Whole Numbers

Finally, reduce the fraction to its simplest form.  Both the numerator and denominator are divisible by 3.  If the simplified form of a fraction has a denominator of 1, turn it into a whole number.

Multiplying Fractions with Whole Numbers

Next we will take a look at multiplying mixed fractions. While multiplying mixed fractions can appear to be a daunting task, it is very simple as well:
Turn the mixed fraction into an improper fraction.

  1. Multiply the numerators.
  2. Multiply the denominators.
  3. Simplify the fraction to its simplest form.

Here is an example:

Multiplying Mixed Fractions

First, turn the mixed fraction into an improper fraction by multiplying the whole number by the denominator to make 6. Then add the numerator to 6 to get 7, your new numerator.  Put this new numerator over the original denominator of 2.

Multiplying Mixed Fractions

Second, multiply the numerators.

Multiplying Mixed Fractions

Third, multiply the denominators.

Multiplying Mixed Fractions

Finally, simplify the fraction. Both the numerator and denominator are divisible by 2.  Once the fraction has been simplified, it can be turned back into a mixed fraction.

Multiplying Mixed Fractions

Multiplying fractions is an easy skill to acquire when your children realize it is not as scary as it may look. Due to the equations’ simplicity they will be zooming through these problems in no time. In fact, these may become some of their favorite math problems to solve!

 

 

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