Award in Mathematics -
Number and Measure (Level 1)
Topic 12: Operations with fractions
The two numbers in a fraction are called the numerator and the denominator.
One simple way to remember which is which is to think of the 'N' for North on a compass or map. 'N' is at the top and the Numerator is at the top.
Adding and subtracting fractions
You may be asked to add together two fractions that have the same denominator. In this case you should leave the denominator unchanged, and just add or subtract the numerators.
You can also subtract one fraction from another in the same way, as long as they have the same denominator.
When multiplying a fraction, you should also leave the denominator unchanged, and just multiply the numerator.
This method will sometimes produce an answer that is greater than 1.
Fractions like 5/4, in which the numerator is greater than the denominator, are called 'improper fractions' or 'top heavy fractions'.
5/4 can also be expressed as 1 1/4 (one and a quarter), which is a 'mixed fraction'.
When dividing a fraction, you should once again leave the denominator unchanged, and just divide the numerator. This is simple as long as the division leaves no remainder.