Adding and Subtracting Fractions

When working with fractions adding and subtracting can be confusing. Get help adding and subtracting fractions here.

Adding and subtracting mixed numbers

Over the last few pages, you've practiced adding and subtracting different kinds of fractions. But some problems will need one extra step. For example, can you add the fractions below?

2 3/5 + 1 3/5

In Introduction to Fractions, you learned about mixed numbers. A mixed number has both a fraction and a whole number. An example is 2 1/2, or two-and-a-half. Another way to write this would be 5/2, or five-halves. These two numbers look different, but they're actually the same.

2 1/2 = 5/2

5/2 is an improper fraction. This just means the top number is larger than the bottom number. Even though improper fractions look strange, you can add and subtract them just like normal fractions. Mixed numbers aren't easy to add, so you'll have to convert them into improper fractions first.


Want even more practice? Try out a short assessment to test your skills by clicking the link below:

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