Adding and subtracting fractions is typically introduced in 4th Grade and is limited to fractions with like denominators. In 5th Grade students then move on and use equivalent fractions to help add and subtract fractions that have different denominators.
The following information and resources will help your child with
adding and subtracting fractions.
subtracting fractions – same denominator
Encourage your child to start
adding and subtracting fractions with the same denominator before trying
to work with fractions with different denominators.
Adding or subtracting fractions – different denominator
The steps shown in the above lesson are also shown below using two fractions: 3/4
Adding or subtracting mixed numbers
There are two methods of adding or subtracting mixed numbers. Either
add the whole numbers and then add the fraction parts, or convert each
mixed number to an improper fraction before calculating. remind your
child to reduce any answers to their lowest term and to change any
improper fractions to mixed numbers.
Tips and Reminders
When adding/ subtracting mixed numbers:
Add the whole number parts.
Change the fractions as required to their equivalent values so
all fractions have the same denominator.
Add/ subtract the numerators. Leave the denominator as is.
The example below shows the adding of two mixed numbers.
Note: An alternative to the above method involves changing the mixed
numbers to improper fractions (7/3 and 15/4), converting these to equivalent
values (28/12 and 45/12), adding these, and finally changing the improper
fraction to a mixed number.
Worksheets – adding, subtracting fractions
Use the worksheets below to practice adding and subtracting fractions