Help with Fraction Story Problems for Kids

Kids in elementary school need to be able to solve fraction word problems, as well as normal fraction problems. Story problems can be more challenging because they require you to figure out which operations you need to perform. Keep reading for help!

Find available tutors

Story Problems with Fractions

Writing the Fraction

Some word problems will just ask you to write a fraction to represent a particular situation. For example, if you cut a pie into seven pieces and ate three of them, what fraction would express this? To solve this type of fraction word problem, just remember that the total number of pieces goes in the fraction's denominator (the bottom), and the partial amount goes in the numerator (the top). In this case, the fraction would be 3/7.

Parts from the Same Whole

When you're working with two fractions that come from the same whole, they'll have the same denominator. For instance, if you ate three slices from your 7-piece pie and your friend ate two slices, this would be represented by the fractions 3/7 and 2/7. What fraction of the pie did the two of you eat together?

Since you ate 3/7 and your friend ate 2/7, you can simply add the numerators together, like this: 3 + 2 = 5, so 3/7 + 2/7 = 5/7. You can do subtraction the same way. For example, if you wanted to know what fraction of the pie was left over, you would subtract 5/7 from 7/7. Since 7 - 5 = 2, the answer is 2/7.

Fractions with Different Denominators

You'll also need to solve story problems about fractions that have different denominators. For example, imagine that your math test has two parts, and you need to add together your scores from each part. You got six out of eight problems correct on the first part (6/8), and two out of three problems right on the second part (2/3).

To solve the problem, you need to find a common denominator. To do this, multiply the numerator and denominator of each fraction by the denominator of the other fraction, and then add the two results together, like this:

6/8 + 2/3

= (3/3)(6/8) + (8/8)(2/3)

= 18/24 + 16/24

= 34/24

=17/12 or 1 5/12

Fraction Problems with Division

To multiply fractions, you just have to find the products of both numerators and both denominators, and then simplify if necessary. Division of fractions is a bit more complicated. Imagine that you have to solve the following problem:

'Edward has 25/2 cups of dough, and he wants to make tarts that require just 1/2 cup of dough each. How many tarts can he make?'

To find the solution, you'll need to divide the total amount of dough (25/2 cups) by the amount of dough needed for each tart (1/2 cup). To divide fractions, you multiply one by the reciprocal of the other. To create a reciprocal, just flip the numerator and the denominator. For instance, the reciprocal of 1/2 is 2/1. Here's how you'll solve the problem:

25/2 ÷ 1/2

= 25/2 x 2/1

= (25 x 2)/(2 x 1)

= 50/2

= 25

Did you find this useful? If so, please let others know!

Other Articles You May Be Interested In

  • More Blog Articles
    Tips to Help Kids Understand Fractions

    Fractions can be a confusing topic for some students. Read on to learn how you can help your children better understand the uses of fractions.

  • More Blog Articles
    5 Free and Fun Math Games for Kids

    Looking for a way to get your child engaged with math? There are many free, fun math games online that explore basic concepts such as addition, subtraction, multiplication and division, as well as more advanced games that offer practice with decimals and fractions. Read on to discover five of our favorite educational - and fun! -...

We Found 7 Tutors You Might Be Interested In

Huntington Learning

  • What Huntington Learning offers:
  • Online and in-center tutoring
  • One on one tutoring
  • Every Huntington tutor is certified and trained extensively on the most effective teaching methods
In-Center and Online

K12

  • What K12 offers:
  • Online tutoring
  • Has a strong and effective partnership with public and private schools
  • AdvancED-accredited corporation meeting the highest standards of educational management
Online Only

Kaplan Kids

  • What Kaplan Kids offers:
  • Online tutoring
  • Customized learning plans
  • Real-Time Progress Reports track your child's progress
Online Only

Kumon

  • What Kumon offers:
  • In-center tutoring
  • Individualized programs for your child
  • Helps your child develop the skills and study habits needed to improve their academic performance
In-Center and Online

Sylvan Learning

  • What Sylvan Learning offers:
  • Online and in-center tutoring
  • Sylvan tutors are certified teachers who provide personalized instruction
  • Regular assessment and progress reports
In-Home, In-Center and Online

Tutor Doctor

  • What Tutor Doctor offers:
  • In-Home tutoring
  • One on one attention by the tutor
  • Develops personlized programs by working with your child's existing homework
In-Home Only

TutorVista

  • What TutorVista offers:
  • Online tutoring
  • Student works one-on-one with a professional tutor
  • Using the virtual whiteboard workspace to share problems, solutions and explanations
Online Only

Help Your Child Succeed

Our Commitment to You

  • Free Help from Teachers

  • Free Learning Materials

  • Helping Disadvantaged Youth