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Chapter 10

Par  ting Ways: Fractions and the Big Four Operations

In This Chapter

Looking at multiplication and division of fractions

Adding and subtracting fractions in a bunch of different ways

Applying the four operations to mixed numbers

In this chapter, the focus is on applying the Big Four operations to fractions. I start by showing you how to multiply and divide fractions, which isn't much more difficult than multiplying whole numbers. Surprisingly, adding and subtracting fractions is a bit trickier. I show you a variety of methods, each with its own strengths and weaknesses, and I recommend how to choose which method will work best, depending on the problem you have to solve.

Later in the chapter, I move on to mixed numbers. Again, multiplication and division won't likely pose too much of a problem because the process in each case is almost the same as multiplying and dividing fractions. I save adding and subtracting mixed numbers for the very end. By then, you'll be much more comfortable with fractions and ready to tackle the challenge.

Multiplying and Dividing Fractions

One of the odd little ironies of life is that multiplying and dividing fractions is easier than adding ...

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