Learn How to Divide with Two Numbers

Once you've learned your times tables, it's time to work on division. If you're having trouble understanding how to divide, you don't need to worry - it's always hard in the beginning. Here are some explanations and practice problems to ease you into division with two numbers.

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Learning to Divide

What Is Division?

When you divide, you are breaking a number (the dividend) into smaller groups of a certain size. This size is determined by the divisor, which is the second number in the division problem. For example, in the problem 12 ÷ 4, 12 is the dividend and 4 is the divisor, so you have to break 12 into groups of 4. If you do this, you'll wind up with 3 groups, so 12 ÷ 4 = 3.

One way to visualize division is to model problems using paper clips or other small objects. For example, to model the problem 12 ÷ 4, count out 12 objects and arrange them into groups of 4. You'll see that you can make 3 groups, so that proves that 12 ÷ 4 = 3.

Turn It into Multiplication

When you're first learning to divide two numbers, you can use your knowledge of multiplication to solve basic division problems, like 24 ÷ 6. To solve this problem, ask yourself, 'What number times 6 equals 24?' Since 6 x 4 = 24, then you know that 24 ÷ 6 = 4.

Mental Division

Just like you memorized the multiplication tables, you'll also need to memorize the basic division problems. You can make flashcards to help you master basic mental division. Make a stack of note cards, each one with a division problem on one side and the answer on the other. To figure out which problems to include, you can use the multiplication table. Go through each problem, and reverse it to create a division problem. Here are some examples:

3 x 4 = 12 becomes 12 ÷ 3 = 4

3 x 5 = 15 becomes 15 ÷ 3 = 5

3 x 6 = 18 becomes 18 ÷ 3 = 6

Once you've made your cards, quiz yourself by trying to get as many correct answers as you can in as little time as possible. For more fun, compete against a friend!

Practice Problems

Try transforming the following problems into multiplication equations and solving them in your head:

  1. 45 ÷ 9
  2. 36 ÷ 6
  3. 42 ÷ 7
  4. 56 ÷ 8
  5. 20 ÷ 5
  6. 70 ÷ 10
  7. 40 ÷ 8
  8. 10 ÷ 2
  9. 81 ÷ 9
  10. 50 ÷ 25

Answers

  1. 9 x 5 = 45, so 45 ÷ 9 = 5
  2. 6 x 6 = 36, so 36 ÷ 6 = 6
  3. 6 x 7 = 42, so 42 ÷ 7 = 6
  4. 8 x 7 = 56, so 56 ÷ 8 = 7
  5. 5 x 4 = 20, so 20 ÷ 5 = 4
  6. 10 x 7 = 70, so 70 ÷ 10 = 7
  7. 8 x 5 = 40, so 40 ÷ 8 = 5
  8. 2 x 5 = 10, so 10 ÷ 2 = 5
  9. 9 x 9 = 81, so 81 ÷ 9 = 9
  10. 25 x 2 = 50, so 50 ÷ 25 = 2
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