Ratio Math Problems for Kids

Students typically learn about ratios in middle school and continue to study them in high school. Learning to write and solve ratios can take time, but repeated practice with worksheets can help kids master this skill. You also can point out everyday situations where ratios might be used, which could increase your child's motivation to learn about math.

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How Can I Incorporate Practice With Ratios into Everyday Activities?

There are several ways that you can use everyday situations to reinforce your child's understanding of ratios. For example, you might have him or her write down the number of miles on your car's odometer at your next fill-up, as well as how many gallons of gas you put in the tank. Then, when it's time for the following fill-up, have your child note the mileage again. Using this figure, along with the original mileage and the number of gallons of gas used, your child should be able to calculate how many miles your car got per gallon, which is a ratio.

You also can use cooking projects to help your child review ratios. For instance, you might give your son a recipe for snack mix, and ask him identify the ratio of ingredients. If there are two cups of raisins for every one cup of nuts, the ratio is 2:1. Similarly, if your daughter is eating a bag of multi-colored candies, you could challenge her to find the ratio for the different colors. For example, if there are eight blue pieces of candy and ten yellow pieces, the ratio of blue to yellow candies would be 4:5.

Practice Problems

1. A car travels 50 miles in two hours. What is the ratio of miles per hour?

Ratios can be written as fractions. For example, 25 miles per hour can be written as 25/1. They also can be written using a colon (25:1) or the word 'to' (25 to 1).
In this case, your child might write the ratio as a fraction (50/2). Then, he or she can simplify the fraction by dividing both the numerator and denominator by two. The final fraction is 25/1, which is 25 miles per hour.

2. If a baseball player hits the ball 7 out of 9 times, what is his ratio of hits to the number of pitches?

The baseball player's ratio is seven hits for every nine balls thrown, which is 7:9.

3. Max received a 70% on a test. What is the ratio of correct answers to incorrect answers?

A percent can be written as a ratio over 100. So 70% can be rewritten as 70/100, which can be reduced to 7/10. For every ten questions asked, Max answered seven correctly.

4. In a bouquet, there's a 4:1 ratio of purple to pink flowers. If there are three pink flowers, how many purple flowers are there?

For every pink flower, there are four purple flowers. So, if there are three pink flowers, there should be 12 purple flowers because 3 x 4 = 12.

5. If you can wash three cars in two hours, how long will it take to wash 12 cars?

To solve this problem, your child should write a proportional relationship like this: 3/2 = 12/x. To solve for x, your child should cross multiply 2 x 12, and then divide by 3 to determine that x = 8. It will take eight hours to wash 12 cars.
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